I love air shows. My Dad took me when I was a kid. It was the best. I remember riding on his shoulders and craning my neck to see the planes doing their loopty-loos. I remember how contagious my Dad’s excitement about flying was. He’s always loved airplanes and because of that I love them too. I’m not as fond of flying myself but I do love a good show with noisy planes and exciting explosions.
When Toby and I were dating we went to a few air shows and that was a positive experience too. I’m still proud of the photos I took of the “Wall of FIRE” way back when. I was really excited to share all this with Baby Bug but mostly I was excited to be doing something together with Toby, as a family. He works so hard and there is never enough time to do all the things we want to do. So this was a really big deal. We’d been planning it for months.
You know what that means: expectations high; possibility of disappointment even higher. I think I was already expecting things to go badly before we even left. I hate it when I’m a pessimist like that. Hello, self-fulfilling prophecy.
We left late and then there was an accident on the freeway that put us behind a whole extra hour. The traffic sent Toby into a foul mood that I thought for sure would ruin our whole day. Lunchtime was spent in the car grumpily not eating. The beautiful family-togetherness picnic that I had planned for us turned into one person eating while the other held the crazy, no-napping, no-eating, climbing-on-everything toddler. Not exactly what I had been hoping for.
Between the beer-guzzling slobs sitting next to us and the testosterone-driven teenagers bounding up and down the bleachers on both sides of us, I was afraid we might get stepped on, spilled on or killed. It wasn’t a walk in the park. The planes were noisier than I remembered. I did not pack any sort of ear protection for Baby Bug so she was crying and covering her ears. I was feeling like crap because I couldn’t stop her ears from possibly being permanently damaged and even worse I couldn’t hear a thing she was trying to tell me.
And then it rained on us! Which actually sort of panicked me. The thought of being part of a large rowdy crowd trying to get out of the rain while holding my sleeping toddler (who fell asleep in my arms at the beginning of the twilight show) really turned my protective mother-bear instincts up to full-gear. I could just see us being trampled and falling by the wayside into a muddy puddle, or worse: angry fans pressing us against a chain-link fence and we would all die a bloody death like those crazy soccer games you read about.
So there were a lot of negatives.
But you know what? As I look over my photos, I am remembering a lot of good things. We were together as a family. Toby wasn’t in a foul mood all day. In fact, he and Baby Bug had so much fun goofing off and discussing the events that it was impossible for me to hold onto my bad mood. I did my fair share of grumping but I laughed a lot too.
I think it wasn’t until we were walking the five miles (it seemed) back to the car in the rain that I realized how much I love my little family and how happy they make me. I’m proud of them. We are troupers. We can miss half the show and walk five miles in the rain together. We are tough.
I felt invigorated by the walk. I should have been exhausted holding Baby Bug in my arms that long but I was actually proud of myself. I couldn’t put her in the stroller because it had gotten soaked in the downpour. It was really strange. I know she is a light child but still, walking that far with my arms locked should have done me in.
I was thinking about how my body was created for carrying my child. I might be horrible at swinging an axe and terrible at playing baseball but I can carry my kid for an hour without complaining.
Baby Bug woke up when the fireworks started and instead of being grumpy because her sleep schedule was out of whack, she was just happy to be with us. Over my shoulder she babbled on about every color as they flew into the sky. I may have missed the show but I got an earful from my most favorite narrator in the whole wide world.
I meant to blog about all the little things, like the man behind us who saw Baby Bug’s distress and handed us a pair of ear plugs without saying a word. How impressed with the Marines I am. How seamlessly they directed traffic out of the compound. How amazingly efficient every person was at his job. How the Blue Angels were even more amazing than I remembered…but it’s taken me way too long to write this post already. Maybe those sentiments were meant to be saved for another day.
What I’m taking away from this is that my family is an efficient unit. We might be dealt some poor odds but we can still have a good time. Or at least some good times in the midst of a bunch of bad times.
Also Toby took a movie. :)