Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Friday Night

My lovely husband allowed me to escape last Friday night.  I had tickets to see the spectacular Kathleen Edwards at the 9:30 Club.  I was really looking forward to it, that is, until the babe came down with a fever at school and I had to pick her up, about 8.5 hours before I was to be heading out the door for my big night out.

Luckily my husband reassured me he would be fine and the babe would be fine, too.  "Go and have fun," he said (or something like that).  So I did.  There was a little bit of guilt, but a lot of excitement.  You may not recall, but I am a big Kathleen Edwards fan and if I were a rock star, I'd like to be sorta like her (she is from my hometown, Ottawa, after all).

So, the concert was great.  Hanging out with my old friend was great.  But getting home at 1:00 am to a sick little girl was not great.  My husband had just changed the sheets on her bed as she had thrown up. 

Now, what you probably don't know is that Kathleen Edwards released a new album a few weeks ago, Voyageur.  One of the songs on this album is called "Change the Sheets" and I have been listening to it while driving around town with the kids.  They dig it (excellent taste, those kids of mine).

Now this may not be completely on the up and up, but I had agreed to tape a little bit of "Change the Sheets" on my phone to show the babe (I was trying to make her feel better).  How appropriate is it then that when I got home, just after my husband had changed the babe's sheets, she sweetly asked me if I could play "Change the Sheets" on my phone for her.  That 5 year old sure is a dedicated fan!  And was I ever glad I had figured out how to tape with my phone in a dark night club.

Saturday was a rough day for all of us.  But I sure was glad I'd been able to rock out with K.E.

The babe is back in good health and all is well.

The Kids Were Gone

You know the kind of dreams you feel trapped in?  I believe they're called nightmares.  And I had one last night. 

It was a dream which forced me to wake up my husband for comfort, check on my kids and shed a few tears.  It was a dream that caused me to remember that bad things can happen really fast.  One moment your life is "normal," and the next, your life becomes a nightmare.

My neighborhood, and the general NW section of DC has been experiencing what they call a "crime wave."  People are being mugged at gunpoint on the streets while walking home from the metro.  Homes are being broken into.  And there have even been a few cases of people being attacked and robbed after getting out of their cars in front of their homes. 

It has changed the way my husband and I operate on a daily basis.  He no longer wears his ear phones while walking home at night.  He has stopped wearing his father's watch for fear that it could be stolen at gunpoint.  I am locking our car doors as soon as we are all buckled in.  I am catching taxis home when I used to catch the metro and walk.  What really irks me is that I have given up my after dinner head refreshing evening walks around the neighborhood.  We have been told this is just a phase and once these guys are caught we will be able to return to "normal."  Although it will be a new "normal," as we have now seen what can happen very close to home. 

While I wouldn't say we are living in fear, we certainly have become more aware and cautious.

That brings me to my nightmare.  My kids and I were headed out on a park date in our car with another Mom and her daughter.  The kids were buckled into their car seats along with the other Mom.  I was about to go back up our front path to lock up the house when I noticed a few slightly dodgy guys walking down the street.  I figured it was broad day light and that I shouldn't be overly concerned.  I did lock the car doors, just to be safe.  I went in to lock up the house and set the alarm, which involves momentarily shutting the front door.  I set the alarm, walked outside, and the car was gone.  My kids were gone.  The Mom and her daughter were gone.  And the 2 dodgy guys were gone.

The rest of my nightmare involved panic, calls to 911, and the dark realization that my kids were missing.

Somehow I managed to escape the dream.  But I can't explain how real it was when I was stuck in it.

I don't know why this dream was enough to motivate me to actually update my neglected blog, but I guess I wanted to share it as a reminder that stuff can happen quickly.  Anyone who has lost their child in a grocery store, watched their child run out into a street or parking lot, or watched their baby fall off a bed or couch will tell you that.  Bad s#%$ can happen fast.

As you may have guessed, I will now be more cautious when my kids are playing in the front of the house.  While I am usually on top of them, there are times I have run into the house quickly to grab something.  And while I am not going to live in fear, I am going to step up our families security so I don't have to face any real life nightmares.