We mistakenly went out for dinner to a quiet ethnic restaurant last night. It was all my doing. I just had to have Indian - nothing else would do. We weren't thinking. We left the house unprepared. We didn't do our research or carefully plan.
When we arrived, we noticed that we were only the third table in the entire place. I quickly flipped the menu over to find the kids menu. There wasn't one. Our server asked us if we needed a highchair or a booster. Shaune and I looked at each other worriedly and said neither.
You see, recently we packed away the highchair, tried a booster seat for a few weeks and finally gave up when Deaglan would only settle for a dining room chair. Every night it takes a lot of effort, chiding, threats and sometimes louder-than-we-ever-thought-we'd talk-to-our-child telling to get him to sit for even five minutes straight.
So there we were at this very quiet restaurant. The other two tables hosted each a young couple who I swear wore the pronouncement that they would never ever want children like red flags on their backs. I'm not making it up when I say that these people looked like they felt all children were a nuisance. And I'm positive that our presence only certified their feelings were true.
Because Deaglan did not miraculously morph into a cooperative quiet little person. He stayed his usual curious, grabby, I-don't-do-sitting-still self. And Shaune and I became nervous jittery wrecks as if we had brought a bomb into a building without the foggiest clue of how to diffuse it if it went off.
So after I confirmed that there indeed was no children's menu (you may recall some of my posts complaining that Deaglan only eats cheese and cheerios), I asked our server if she had some crayons and a piece of paper. I would have settled for borrowing her pen and unfolding a napkin at that point. Thankfully she had a blank place mat and plastic cup full of broken crayons.
I told Shaune to hurry up and decide on his meal so we could order as soon as the server came back with our drinks. No sense testing Deaglan's limits at a time like this. Unfortunately we didn't have to wait long for him to reach these limits.
I ordered him a plate of steamed basmati rice and some cheese-filled nan bread. I absent-mindedly gave him a spoon to eat the rice with. That's when the concert started. He first jumped off of his chair and began drumming on the chair. As I tried discreetly to grab him he escaped my reach and ran toward a brick wall and learned what a lovely scraping noise the spoon made against it. By this point white rice covered the floor beneath us. I began the chase while Shaune crouched to the floor to pick up the rice. Once I caught up to him, with teeth clenched, I grabbed his arm and suggested we go for a walk to the front of the restaurant to see the Christmas tree.
Dumb, dumb, dumb.
His first instinct of course was to grab the garland and beads. I picked him up but this only caused wailing and crying to let him down. Out of breath and pregnant I calmed him and brought him back to the table. Our food had arrived. The server asked if we needed anything else. We'll try the highchair I suggested desperately.
This entire time I was too afraid to look over at the other tables. I didn't want to see their disapproving looks. I did notice however that there was not a single chuckle or awwww so cute directed our way.
We were able to eat a few bites and then just gave up and asked that our food be packaged for home. I always swore I would never be one of those parents who scolds and yells at her kids in public. And I didn't last night but I am seriously re-considering this foolish oath I made.