growth spurt


I found myself exhausted this morning after being up for thirty minutes.  I had my coffee.  I had French toast on the griddle.  I had four happy kids playing upstairs (for those of you that are counting, yes, that’s one extra-).  The laundry was moving.  The dishwasher was unloaded.  I was getting ready to mop the floors.

Thirty minutes.  I had been up for thirty minutes.  And yet by 8 a.m., I was a bit scared.  We had one thing on the agenda.  One have to: shoe shopping.  And at this early hour, we had already talked about it fifteen times.

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I normally embrace this type of day (read: shopping!!!).  But, we had to shop for running shoes (read: hell), which is a lot of on and off, a lot of lacing, a lot of running up and down the aisles and debating the pros and cons of the color schemes that Nike has compared to Adidas.  It’s a lot of talk.  It’s loud.  Seriously, it’s ridiculous.

It feels even more ridiculous when you have spent the past day listening to your five-year old try to talk you into a pair of black and white springtime dress shoes with rhinestones on them.

“Mommy, if you will just get me those then I promise I will watch for tennis shoes to go on sale,” pleads Fia.

“Fia, stop crying.  We are looking for tennis shoes,” I explain.

“NOOOOO! Mommy, you said you would buy me shoes and those are the shoes I really want.  I don’t waaannt tennis shoes and I won’t stop crying unless you buy me the black and white ones.  They’re on sale,” big tears, loud voice, hand on head (not kidding) drama.  I have to admit, I liked the sale argument.  Points for illustrating the savings kid.  Now, try again.

I couldn’t just take Abigail.  They all hit a growth spurt.  Ironically, on the same night, because just like that, no one had tennis shoes that fit.

So, we loaded the van and headed out.  I shuddered inside.  Where was my fairy godmother?  Someone give me a reason to stay.  Doesn’t anybody want to come?

They never stopped talking.  It was incessant.  We stopped twice before arriving at our destination and even while filling up with gas I could hear the hum of their excitement in the van.   Walking through Target, they never stopped.  They yelled at each other for interrupting.  They kept talking louder.  They interrupted more.  People around us giggled, stared, and listened to the chatter that accompanied our cart.  Abigail was explaining why her shoes were the most important.  Fia was still pushing for the black and white beauties.  Evie was adamant that she was going first.

I was speechless.   I loaded my goods.  I unloaded my goods.  I paid.

I never spoke.  I nodded.  I mmmhmm’ed.  I never spoke.

And then, at last, we arrived at the shoe store.

I swear they knew we were coming.  An entire bench waited for us right in front of the kid’s shoes.  My girls were shoeless and mesmerized in thirty seconds.  Feet measured.  Growth confirmed.  We were ready for the insanity.

Thirty minutes (or forty?) later a few things had been determined: there were no shoes for Evie. Fia wanted to see every pair in her size to assess the color schemes.  She ultimately selected a light purple pair that was on sale.  Smart girl.  Abigail moved away from her first choice based on color to a blander shoe based on comfort.  Smart girl.  My shoes were on sale; I didn’t try them on.

We paid.  We left.  We got to the car.  They cried.

They were hungry.

These children are always hungry.  I can plan our day to the most minute detail and it never fails, there is never enough food.  So I had to decide: refuse to listen and drive home to eat (which meant no shoes for Evie) or stop, feed them and keep on shoe shopping (which meant no nap for Evie).  Either one was terribly risky.

OK, fine.  I was hungry too (I mean they’re my kids).  We stopped for food and I watched nap time disappear before my eyes.

It was the right choice though.  Evie’s decision making was fast – she had no problem zeroing in on a radiant silver pair of sneakers at shoe store number two.  Her full belly enabled her to think quickly and efficiently.  We escaped easily and made sure our laces were tied before getting home.

But, we survived.  We ate. We ran around in our new shoes.  The girls played basketball.

Tonight, I think I may actually get to sleep alone.  Evie told me that she was “very, very tired from all the exercise in her new shoes and that [her] legs have growing pains.”

Yes!  I mean, yes, dear Evie, I know your legs are really tired.

Tonight, Abigail is filled with wild anticipation for her running club to start.  She must have asked me at least ten times if I was “proud of her for picking out such comfortable shoes?”

Yes, sweet Abbey, I am proud of your thoughtful decision-making.

Fia laid out her clothes for tomorrow.  She placed her tennis shoes beside her outfit.  She held my hand and showed me.  She mentioned that the outfit “would really be better if [she] had the other shoes and since [she] was sooo good today. . . will [I] please just consider it?”

AHHHH!  Sophia.  Yes.  I am considering it.


2 Responses to “growth spurt”

  1. 1 Michelle

    This made me laugh outloud. Loved reading about all the emotions that went into the shoe shopping……because as all women know, it’s not just a select and purchase activity. It’s exciting, frustrating, disappointing, and exhausting….. and it does make you really hungry!

  2. Update: I didn’t sleep alone.

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