Being a mom means I get busy. We all do. Sometimes when I’m busy, I just don’t feel like cooking. Cutting, chopping, grinding, boiling, steaming, frying, and broiling are things I don’t want to do at the end of a long day. Most the time I do though, but every once in a while I yearn to go out to eat, pretend like I am royalty and let someone else wait on me hand and foot. The only problem with that is the little thing called our child that we have to bring along with us….
We’ve all been there. We made the decision to go out to eat, thinking, “oh, its only four o’clock, maybe no one will be in the restaurant yet”, or “lets go to the loud restaurant, that way little junior’s shrieking and knife throwing won’t bother anyone.” Yeah right, I wish.
So one day there I was, pretending to be a queen for an hour, sipping on my red wine, while the waiter brought our appetizers. Yes, I pretend that the restaurant is my kingdom, and I, the queen. I get to prop up my feet while my servants bring me my food. The bus boys clean up after me. More wine! I demand. The manager is my personal assistant. He gets me whatever I want. Free cheese dip? This is just one of the perks of being a queen for the day. Others look at me with envy. It feels good. Maybe they have never seen the queen at the local Mexican joint. Look at cute little junior, so adorable, they say.
However, being a queen is hard. Not everyone loves the queen. There are always a few dissenters in any kingdom. I am quickly snapped back into reality when my little prince decides to throw a pickle at my face, and then I realize that I am not in my magical kingdom land, but I am in the local Mexican restaurant, scarfing down a seven dollar burrito as fast as I can before junior has a breakdown.
Remember I mentioned the dissenters? They are the ones without kids. They just don’t understand. They look at us mothers, wondering, why is there is a child in a restaurant? A child of all things! He doesn’t belong here! Is she crazy?
Well, maybe I am crazy. I have heard people compare taking a child out to eat to torturing the fellow customers. That may be true, but as queen, I could do whatever I wanted, darn it. So what if he liked to chew his food and spit out on the floor for fun, he wasn’t bothering you, was he? And so what if when I wasn’t looking, he pulled a Houdini move and stole the knife off of the table, and chucked it at a passerby like an expert knife thrower. No one ever said it was an easy job being a mom…
I’d like to think of my child shrieks as…alternative music. It is an acquired taste. It is actually more like something I just block out and pretend like it isn’t happening. I just keep pretending that maybe all those people are looking at me because they have never seen royalty in public. Who am I kidding? I was wearing sweat pants and my old sorority t-shirt from college with my hair pulled up in a scrunchie circa 1997.
Then junior starts crying. I blame it on the cold tortillas. If he wasn’t served cold tortillas, maybe he wouldn’t be crying, I say. “Ma’am, I think this tortilla is cold”. The waiter responds, “Maybe its because it has been sitting there for twenty minutes while your little terror you call a child has been harassing all of the customers with his shrieking, escaping out of the high chair and practicing his sneak attack skills on the knees of the customers.”
I think it’s time this new queen finds a new kingdom…
DISCLAIMER: I do not actually treat restaurant staff like they are my servants. I once worked in a restaurant and know it is a very hard job. The more difficult the child is that day, the more I tip. It’s the least I can do.
Fri, June 15, 2012
by Salle Mickey