The road not taken

Working comes with having to be a single mom. When you are the sole provider for a child, sometimes your work can spill into the weekends and from home. You don’t really want to work while your son is quietly drawing with a pen on your calendar for work… your bank statements… your bills… but you think to yourself, “the faster I finish this, the sooner I can play with you!”

I don’t like it when I have to work from home. Ricky doesn’t like it either. I don’t want to miss a thing with him so I find it really a dilemma when it comes to the thought that I actually DO have to put things aside and finish working.

Ricky, to say the least, was not pleased when, on such a beautiful weekend like we had this past weekend, I was busy sitting on the laptop on the bed while he ran around the house. I didn’t like it either, but it was a necessity as I tried to balance the budget so that MAYBE we can go to the baby bro’s wedding. (which is now in New York this September because the fiancee is now knocked up.) He kept brining me random sort of things from various parts of the house to see if I would play. There was the stuffed soccer ball from the living room, the bath duck from the bathroom, his diapers from his side of the bedroom… each time it was met with, “oh THANK YOU Ricky! I will be right there to play with you,” from a mommy who knew she wasn’t going to be ready to play for about an hour.

Ricky finally catches on that I am busy. Pouting, he walked away. A few minutes later he returned with a plastic bag full of stove popped popcorn I make for a light snack every Sunday night. Resigned to the fact I was working, Ricky started munching on it after he climbed on the bed to sit next to me and see what I was doing. Obviously, a three year old isn’t going to be that thrilled over my quicken spreadsheets.

Ricky was quiet for about five minutes. He munched his popcorn and was watching with deep interest… or so I though. When I took a second to rub my eyes, because staring at a computer screen is quite strenuous on the eyes after a bit, I felt it. Something hit the side of my head. I opened my eyes and looked down at the laptop. On the keyboard were about five popcorn kernels.

I looked at Ricky. He was acting as though nothing had happened. Still munching his popcorn and watching the screen as intently as an almost 3 year old can. I shook my head, and continued typing.


Kernels hit my head. I look at Ricky. He smiles like a little devil at me, hand in the popcorn bag. I shook my head. He slowly retracted a hand full of popcorn from the bag, aiming to throw it.

My face: “don’t you dare…”
His face: “go ahead, make my day…”

You can hear “the good, the bad and the ugly” playing as the standoff began.

Needless to say, the second I looked away, the popcorn flew. I looked at Ricky. He cracked up and went for more.

Here is the road in the wood that you can take: one of them leads to you explaining to your toddler that throwing food when mommy is working is not ok. In fact, it’s not ok to throw food at anytime. The other road has you slamming the computer shut, tumbling over the bed frame, scooping up popcorn as you go, and taking cover as an all out war between your toddler and yourself ensues, popcprn flying every which way, as you chuck it at him and he at you as a great chase goes on, through the bedroom, into the living room, down the halls, and eventually having a three year old corner you in the kitchen.

Needless to say, I am still finding popcorn in random places (really, how did it get in the planter that hangs from the windows?) and I am pretty sure the dog is completely traumatized. However, the memory of the laughter and screeching, of the pattering of feet and tickles… that is what matters most.

Two roads diverged in a wood and I-
I took the less traveled by.
And that has made all the difference.

3 Responses to “The road not taken”

  1. Shamelessly Sassy Says:

    I love stories about Ricky. Good luck cleaning up the popcorn. I can never manage to clean popcorn up. I’ll find kernels weeks from now.

  2. motherofbun Says:

    What a great story. Your little Clint Eastwood cracks me up!

  3. Amber Says:

    Ha! I love it when a somewhat stressful situation turns out to be so nice and memorable. Good for you for laughing about it, I’m sure it made his day!

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