Just as she was leaving and I was grabbing my things for preschool pickup, the phone rang. The school nurse called to inform me Benjamin had fallen and scraped his forehead, been cleaned up, given a bandage and an ice pack. Paperwork was added to his backpack about his fall and signs to look for in case of a concussion.
As he walked out of the school, I could tell he wasn't himself. He definitely had a goose egg and a scratch along with that bandage and ice pack. His backpack had the routine paperwork. We go to the park in front of his school every single day after school. Today, he said he wanted to go home. He reluctantly allowed Claire a few minutes of swing time and we were off. He didn't appear to have a concussion and no spoilers here (he didn't!). I assume he was both feeling a headache from his small head injury and also in an uncomfortable funk because he just hurt himself for the first time without Mommy present, had another (likely stranger) adult console him and another stranger (nurse) caring for him. He also probably felt embarrassed for having hurt himself at all and needing this attention.
Instead of going home so early, I figured we'd head to one of our favorite pizza places for a few slices. They love this place, especially because they have lollipops for the kids that they always choose as a treat when the meal is over.
We ordered and sat outside like we always do. Claire began to throw a fit. She was crawling on the table and screaming. And at that point, the wind was so strong that it was blowing our cups down. I schlepped our pizza and cups and napkins and stuff and two kids inside the restaurant and plopped down in a booth. Phew.
Claire continues the battle with no end. She's pulling me this way and that, grabbing at things, knocking down other things and insisting we move tables again. I helped her carry over her slice of pizza to another table and put it down. Then she promptly swoops it up and chucks it on the floor, face down, obviously. Luckily the cheese wasn't super melty, as it had plenty of time to cool off and coagulate at this point. It remained fully intact and the seemingly clean floor showed no signs of the fall.
I try to maintain some peace while tables of other patrons are eating their lunches, assuming they might get a break from the noise of the day. It wasn't so. I threw up the white flag and started grabbing our things, stacking our pizza for a quick exit, throwing away our full water cups, putting back condiments, stuffing excess stuff into the crevices of my purse and schlepping kids outside.
Another mom with her two kids stops me and hands me something (I had seen her purchasing at the counter). It was wrapped in a bag and she said, "You're doing great. I know those days. This is for you."
She handed me an empathy brownie.
And so we went home with a screaming baby who continued to tantrum for another half hour and throw food all over the (home) kitchen multiple times. And what happened to that pizza that landed face down? I peeled off and discarded the cheese (that touched the ground) that revealed the (untouched and buried) sausage and saucy crust of which I cut it into tiny pieces and fed to that angry baby. It's cleaner than the majority of the world has for lunch, I guess. #judgeme #goahead
Terrible twos, we welcome you again. Please be kind.