The other day, I had an errand to run at the grocery store. I also had all three kids with me and decided to go to the grocery store after school anyway.
When we got there, it was bumping, but I still parked the car, unbuckled all the kids, got all my stuff to cover all possible baby mishaps, and headed inside.
I let the big kids each take those kid-sized, ankle-biter carts and off we went.
Everyone did wonderfully including me. We got everything we needed without raising a voice and never crashed either cart into anyone or anything. We even managed the self-checkout lane without accidentally stealing something.
But as we walked outside, each carrying a grocery bag, I looked left and I looked right yet there was no parade heading across the parking lot filled with HOORAY ALEX! WAY TO GO MOM! signs and balloons. Nobody was even applauding or offering high-fives. Only when we got to the car and I buckled everyone in, I did take a moment to high-five myself, but it just wasn’t the same as the parade I felt I deserved.
I did call my husband who was duly impressed. And I’m obviously writing about it here because even though it’s been many days since this amazing interlude occurred, I’m still awed with this momentous accomplishment.
But it got me thinking about all the things I feel unnecessarily proud of like finally hand-washing my hand-wash-only sweater.
And I wonder: Do other people just do these things? Is it no big deal when all the LEGOS are sorted and put away? When I’ve washed, dried, sorted, IRONED, and put away my clothing, am I the only one who thinks I’ve accomplished something miraculous?
Or when I’ve returned every phone call? Every email? When I pump gasoline before I’m running late and have been on empty for three days?
How about when I’m in bed at 9:30, not because I’m pretending the kitchen sink is free of dishes but because it actually is? Where is the applause? Where is my laugh track when I pull off a zinger in my car but don’t actually murder the person who cut me off and did NOT have right-of-way?
I soothe this longing by knowing that when I’m rich and famous and hiding from the paparazzi most days, I’m going to organize the EVERY DAY PARADE so those of us, who have misplaced pride in being humans accomplishing human things, can finally feel the fanfare we deserve even if it’s just us clapping for us while some sad clowns saunter by.
We earned it. We got dressed today, didn’t we?