It’s been awhile since I have posted a When Theo is Gone story! I guess I kind of took the summer off from these stories, but I’m back it now! I still have many more to share!
This particular story takes place when Tera was about two months old. I was feeling pretty confident in my mothering abilities (har har har) and we had been invited to a wedding in Michigan. The best part of Michigan is that Grandpa and Grandma live there. It would EASY to drive to Michigan because then I would have the help of Grandma. I mean, THAT is a brilliant idea.
Except for one factor. I had to drive. By myself.
But no big deal! I’ve made this drive dozens and dozens of times before! I’ve done it at night. I’ve done it during the day. I’ve done it too many times to count. But never had I done it with a baby. And a dog.
Where is Theo? You might ask. Well, you see when Theo needs a day off, he has to pick up a shift. But when you work every other day and then you pick up a shift, that means that you are working three days in a row. Without coming home. And that means that your wife and newborn baby would be alone. For three days.
No, thank you. I will go hang out with Grandma any day of the week than be myself with a newborn for three entire days. So our journey began.
Here we are. Me, Tera and the dog. And you would be correct in noticing that I was driving a truck.
The trip is usually five hours. The first three hours went GREAT! I was doing AWESOME! I was so good at this. The dog was calmish and sleeping. The baby was sleeping. I was driving. Yay.
Until Tera woke up and I remembered that it had been three hours since she had last eaten. Time to stop at the next rest area.
As soon as I stopped I realized that taking a road trip with a baby is not as easy as taking a road trip without a child. When I stopped I didn’t know how to handle the dog and the baby. I tried feeding Tera in the truck withe dog in the truck, but that did NOT work. So I had to put Tera down on the floor of the truck and take the dog for a little walk to the nearest pole and tie him up. Thankfully he was within eyeshot and earshot. Back to the truck to feed Tera, all while listening to the dog bark. Once Tera was done eating, I realized that i should eat something and the dog should also eat something. I managed to do all that with success, and then I realized that I needed to go to the bathroom. Hmmmm, what were my possibilities here?
1. Leave the dog and Tera in the truck. NOPE.
2. Leave the dog tied up the pole. But he might get stolen. NOPE.
3. Take the dog and the baby into the rest area. Dumbo. Can’t do that.
4. Leave the dog in the truck and take the baby inside the rest area. Ding! Ding! Ding! I’m brilliant!!
So into the truck the dog goes. And into the rest area Tera and I go. And I hold her floppy head and body with one hand while trying very hard to unbotton, unzip and pull my pants down. I know. It sounds easy. But just try it. Try to unbotton, unzip and pull down your jeans with one hand.
HAHAHA! You thought that was hard?!? Jokes on you! Now try to pull them up, zip them up and button them up with one hand!!!
I quickly learned that I was simply not going to get my pants buttoned. At least I had them pulled up and zipped. Thankful for that.
I finally made my way back to the truck and got Tera back into the carseat. I glanced at the clock. Time lapsed? AN HOUR AND A HALF. Oh, geez.
Back on the road with just two hours to go.
Well, it turns out that with our loooooong stop at the rest area, Tera needed to eat again before the two hour drive was over. So about 20 minutes away I couldn’t take the crying any longer, and we made one more stop. This time I was better prepared and I tied up the dog and fed Tera. BOOM! ONLY 30 MINUTES!!! Woohoo.
Back on the road and we made it to Grandma! It was worth the adventure!
And after two days with Grandma, Theo came and joined us. And we attended the wedding in style.
And that my friends was my first road trip without Theo along to help me out. I’ve done a few more trips without Theo, and they are much, much, much harder than the trips where is he along with some extra hands!!