39 minutes until I need to leave for yoga. I want coffee.
“Dylan, do you want to come to the coffee shop with me?” She does. “Ok,” I say, “But we’ve got to hustle.” She nods her head yes. She has committed to the hustling. Then, she immediately wanders off to our computer, climbs up onto the desk chair and begins randomly pecking on the computer board and doodling on birthday invitations. I’ve known a lot of hustle in my day and that is definitely not it.
37 minutes until I need to leave for class. I still want coffee.
To me, “hustle” means, “to hurry, to move rapidly, to take action energetically, to get your groove on.” Dylan has a more avant-garde interpretation. To a 3-year-old like herself, the word appears to have several meanings: (1) Promise to get dressed and then start investigating and dismantling my parent’s stuff until one of them notices (2) Run in circles around the kitchen island until I slip, cry, search for mommy to give kisses to my severe yet invisible, nonexistent injury, then repeat circles (3) Find baby sister, make her laugh, hug her tightly, maybe just pinch her neck a bit, she likes that, oh wait, she’s crying, maybe she doesn’t, I’ll pinch her one more time to see if she likes it now.
None of these definitions is getting me any closer to a large skim cafe mocha.
36 minutes to yoga. “Dylan, get dressed. Come on. Or else I’m leaving without you.” My threat and my full focus has finally got Dylan moving at a rate of thick, heavy syrup. I’ll take it.
Toddlers don’t just move slowly. They move in reverse. You get one sock on and they’ve removed their shirt to wear a different one. You finally get their coat on, turn your back for point 3 seconds to get your own jacket and the coat is off so he or she can put it on themselves.
32 minutes left. Dylan is dressed. We’ve got some real momentum now. We are out the door. Caffeine is within my reach. Just a few blocks.
“We’re walking too fast,” she insists. This immediately jolts me back to walking in the city with my mom years ago. We are late for a broadway show. She’s walking briskly. Cold air is slapping me in the face. With every block, I am trailing farther and farther behind. She’s getting impatient. She wants to use the ladies room before the play starts. We must hurry. I’m trying. Why is she walking so fast?
Fast forward. 24 minutes until yoga. I scoop Dylan up and lug her the last block. We have made it. We make it back. There’s no time to finish my coffee. I’m off to yoga class. I leave Rick and the two girls, all of whom, thankfully, have no where to be.
mama bird notes
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