“I Had a Weird Day”
The title here isn’t to imply I had a weird day, far from it as a matter of fact.
No…the title refers to a seeming constant of late as I approach my home and open the door after getting off work. It’s a phrase that seems to permeate my son’s vocabulary.
Tonight, tired, worn down from the week, in desperate need of food and rest, I still had to make dinner. I was in dress pants, a dress shirt, uncomfortable dress shoes, and carrying my laptop case, lunchbox and several bags from the grocery store.
It starts, though, with trying to unlock the door. This time of year it’s nearly dark when I get home. I asked the kids to remember to turn on the lights so I can unlock the door without wanting to throw my keys into the bushes. Unfortunately, they can remember how many Pokemon balls are in a particular Nintendo world but not to turn on the lights for their Dad. As a result, you can see the scratches and mauled marks on the door handle almost as if I came home drunk every night and tried to put my key into one of the three locks I saw in my stupor.
So it’s this, bogged down by bags, that I saw when approaching the house. Tired, sore, and just worn out I enter to see my son running into the room and saying, full-volume. “Well…I had a weird day today, at school.”
“Not really, I guess. It was weird, though.”
I understand that the kids have been waiting to tell me about their day since they got home around 3pm. He was waiting around the corner to be first to pounce. It’s like it was eating him up inside.
“Gee…hi Dad, love you Dad, how was your day today, Dad? What’s going on, Dad? Do I get that? Uh…no. I get a dissertation on how awful your day was 10 seconds into my walk into the door. I’m still in dress clothes, my mind still on work and we haven’t even opened the bags to make dinner yet.”
This of course was followed by a brief moment of silence and then . . .
“uh…hi, Dad! How was your day, Dad? What’s going on, Dad? You tired, Dad? What did you do at work, Dad? What is the rest of your week like? Doing and good stories? What’s. . . .” the inquiry went on for another minute.
“Dear…God…” I said. He smiled.
“Do me a favor, please,” I sincerely asked him. “Can you let me change into jeans and a t-shirt, get dinner going, have a glass of tea, and then give me the daily rundown of how awful your day was? Just so I can prep for the verbal pummeling?
He thought for a second . . . and said “okay, that’s fair, Dad. I’m sorry.” I smiled.
Immediately after . . . his sister came out, talking a mile a minute, asking “canIgotoayouthgroupJakesayshecanpickmeupanditswednesdayandiamnotsurewhorunsitorwhyorwhatisgoingonbutireallywanttogoandhavenodetailsand…”
I rolled my eyes, lashed out, and said, simply: “you got a full day at the comic-con here. Now you want me to decide on this with no information, no address, no names and whatever the hell is going on?! I haven’t even made dinner yet!”
She retreated, mumbling, berating me in a dour, grumpy, hormonal teenage way.
“…and hello to you, too!” I shouted over her shoulder.She went to slam the door and thought better of it.
About 10 minutes later, after a change of clothes, a small refreshment, and dinner on the stove, I had heard the full details of the “weird” day from both sons. It was nothing so horrible or terrible. They just wanted to get it off their chests.
By the time they’d finished, my daughter slinked in, head down, and said “I’m sorry, Dad. I . . . I guess I hadn’t thought about it, I just want to go . . . ”
I interrupted her. “I need details about anything you do. I know your friends have ideas but that’s their thought – jump with no net. No idea. No plan and no information. Parents, however. . . we want to know details. I knew who held the con, the security detail, who was visiting, all of it. I . . . want . . . details before I agree to anything.”
“That’s fair,” she said, and ran off to get them.
I swallowed the last of my tea, took a deep breath, sighed a bit . . . and headed to the stove to check on dinner.