Now Serving: Peace & Quiet For One



In the not-so-distant past (it was today), I may have told my husband I was going to find new parents for our children.

It was a day from that non-heaven place. My children refused to listen, no matter how snarly I spoke, or how loud my threats were. By 8:15 this morning, I had already resigned for the day.

These days don’t come around often (praise the Lord) but when they do, they completely do me in. I am not equipped to handle consistent (nay – constant) disregard.

Little Man, who by all accounts is the sweetest little boy to walk this earth, was 150% rotten. This same little boy, who runs around our congregation on Sunday mornings hugging the legs of complete strangers, and melts onto the shoulders of those he feels needs a hefty dose of toddler love, was scowling, growling, and purposefully disobeying me. His eyebrows furrowed as he showed his dislike for my giving voice to his rights (or, lack thereof), as I reminded him for the millionth time he was not allowed to touch anything on the counter. His face was no softer when he scolded me as only a two-year-old can when he pointed at me and barked, “Don’t do dat.”

His ever-so-sweet sister, Little Miss, decided to throw sensibility to the wind as she ran on the furniture, jumped off the furniture, held her brother down against his will, and all of this in between asking me in machine-gun fashion, if she could have more to eat. More snacks. More food. More. More. MORE.

Mama could take no more. I was done. After a rant to my husband about something unrelated, he responded as only the most perfect husband in the world could. “You should go on a girl date tonight.”

Ladies. If you find a man who both recognizes and suggests this solution, nab him immediately.

After only haphazardly trying to find company, tonight I ended up as my own date. I threw on a blazer and my fancy earrings and touched up my eyeliner that had been smeared in all directions when the children decided to sit on top of me and attempt to wrestle me into submission.

Mama was ready for some solo time.

When Brent walked in the door after work, he gave me a kiss and handed me the car keys. I told everyone I loved them and I all but ran out the door. I had no plan. No idea where I was going. No agenda. My only agreement with myself was I must not do anything responsible. No errands, no structure, no taking care of anything except my need for space.

I drove around for a while before a sweet potato with butter and cinnamon started calling my name from across town. Before too terribly long, my growling stomach and I ended up at Longhorn Steakhouse.

It’s just the right size to not feel incredibly crowded, even when it’s full. I was seated right away, and had a big booth all. to. my. self.

I ordered a water, which was the only responsible thing I did. I’m not sure if you’ve ever eaten there or if you have one nearby, but let me tell you a little secret… THEIR FOOD IS INCREDIBLE. Order the parmesan crusted chicken. Do it. And try not to make ridiculous noises of happiness with each bite.

I ordered said chicken with a buttered up, cinnamon-doused sweet potato. And it was the best dinner I’ve ever had. I ate every bite of the bread, chicken, and potato. The only bites of salad I left were covered with too much dressing for me to consume. Otherwise, I polished my plates.

I sucked my water glass dry and when my server came to refill, he saw my empty plates and asked me out of obligation if I wanted dessert. My affirmative nod took him by surprise. How could a little ol’ thing like me have room for any more food? I ordered a slice of banana cream pie and didn’t let a single crumb go to waste.

Earlier, just after my salad had been served, I saw one of my near and dear friends leaving the restaurant. I called out to her and she came over to say hello. She asked me what I was doing and I explained I was treating myself. She, and I know there are so many like her, stated she couldn’t go out to eat by herself like that. We chatted only a brief while before she had to leave, and I was left by myself once again.

I sat alone and was served one of the most delicious dinners and desserts I can remember eating in a long time. I didn’t have to clean up anyone’s spilled drink. I didn’t have to tell anyone to use their fork instead of their hand. I did no clean up. I saved no leftovers. I sat and ate in undisturbed peace. I ate my entire meal while it was hot, and I didn’t have to stop at any point to get any single thing for any other person.

It was heavenly.

When I left the restaurant, I texted my husband how amazing I felt. “Do you need anything? Like a new suit or new golf clubs?” I asked him. I felt that good.

I drove home and sauntered in through our front door. “There’s my honey bunches of oats!” I said, when I spotted my husband siting down. I went to sneak into the kids’ rooms to tell them goodnight. I snuck a hug and kiss from a very sleepy Little Miss. I made sure she was tucked in snug and made my way to Little Man’s room, where he was sitting up in bed waiting for me. I scooped him up and rocked him until he fell to sleep, then I snuggled him a little longer for good measure.

It had been an incredibly challenging, difficult day. When it’s all said and done, though, the kids are absolutely worth the crazy. I’d be lost in life without them.

Also, the moral of the story is: rotten behavior is nothing a little parmesan crusted chicken and banana cream pie can’t fix.

Hallelujah, amen.