As part of the job of parenting, you seldom get to select the shift you want to work. In fact, you may find yourself on call all of the time. Most recently I was called to duty when my son and a couple of his friends went to the movies.One of the other moms dropped the boys off at the movie theater. I asked my son how they were going to get home.
“David’s dad will probably bring us home,” he said.”
Probably was the operative word, meaning he didn’t really know how they would get home.
After my son got to his friend’s house, I received a text from his friend’s mom…“Did your son ask you if you could pick the boys up from the movie?”
I responded with a simple, “no.” What she didn’t see was the terrible two’s temper tantrum I was having. Grumbling and complaining to myself I said, I told him I didn’t want to do the pickup shift. Next time they’re not going to a late show. I’m already sleepy.
Her next message said, “Can you get them?”“Yes, I can get them,” I responded trying to sound polite. Then I fell to the floor kicking and screaming and rolling around (not really, but I would have if that was acceptable adult behavior). It was her fault that I allowed my son to sucker me into yet another late night movie venture without getting all of the details up front.
I was now the parent on call for the late night pick up.
The movie didn’t start until a 10:00pm so I had to either occupy myself for a couple of hours or take a nap. If I had opted for the nap, the boys would probably still be waiting at the movie theater. I occupied myself by washing a load of clothes, then working on a writing project.
Whatever I did, I was sure to stay away from the bed. It I sat there for any length of time, sleep would overtake me. Finally, I got the text at 11:45pm saying the movie was ending. I slipped on my flip flop shoes and threw on a hoodie and was out the door.My shift was almost over…just 20 more minutes until I would be in bed curled up with my pillow. I slid open the sunroof of my car and let the cool night breeze circulate as I journeyed to the movie theater.
I pulled up to the front door, the boys hopped in the car and we were back home in no time. No time card to punch, no supervisor to report to, all that was needed was for me to rest until time to report for duty again.What has been your experience with late night parenting?