Having a Bad day

This chicken joke is guaranteed to cure a bad day. Remember that commercial where a rather annoying woman was going on about her bad day while smiling and eating a Vachon flaky ? If you don’t, watch it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GBzzNMEDbyQ  (By the way, I use to love finding those things in my lunch bag. Thanks mom!)

Yesterday, I was definitely having a bad day.  After reading The Secret, I try to recognize when a day may turn into a bad one when something happens early to trigger enough frustration to put me in a bad mood.   Instead of focusing on that moment, I try to switch my thoughts to something more positive, or shrug it off as just something dumb that happened. I take a few deep breaths, and attempt to go on with my day.  Normally this works, but not yesterday.

It started out fine – I got up on time, made Little T a pancake for his breakfast, and managed to sip half a cup of green tea while reading a book before it was time to get ready to drive him to school.    As I was putting my contacts in, Little T yelled that it was time for me to come get him dressed (I agreed to help him earlier).   Anyone yelling at you at 7:15am in the morning can be hard on the nerves, but I calmly responded that I was busy at the moment but would help him when I was finished.

“But you SAID you would GET ME DRESSED!”  This is the kind of moment where green tea just doesn’t help. I should have downed a big mug of coffee to get the stamina to work through a parenting moment so early in the morning.  Trying to use more calm words, I again explained to him that when I am busy doing something he needs to wait until I am finished.  By this time he already got himself dressed, but just needed help with his zipper.  But he still went on about how I said I would help him but didn’t.  At that point I chose silence, but the previous loud tone of his voice was still ringing in my ears.

I managed to get him to school without any additional conflict. In fact, he happily sat in the back seat calling out numbers for me to add “What’s 2 plus 2 mommy?”  “What’s 4 plus 4?” Whenever he gets to number where I need Excel to add, I tell him it’s enough math for my brain.  I arrived home and went about making a coffee and assembling my pumpkin seed bun with sliced tomatoes, cucumber and cheese.  While the water was boiling, I took a look through the freezer to see if there was anything I could pull out for lunch.  As I was rooting though the frozen contents, a container of frozen pasta with tomato sauce came sliding out and I wasn’t able to catch it before it went crashing down on the tiled floor, small pieces of plastic shattering everywhere.

I thought the pasta was still salvageable, but as I was washing the container, more plastic pieces were breaking off, so I reluctantly ditched the meal, thinking that pasta with melted plastic wouldn’t taste so good.   I was pissed off, as it was the perfect leftover meal for Little T and me (Hubby was away this week on business).  As I was sweeping up the scattered plastic bits on the floor, I tried not to think about how this was delaying the start to my morning, which was already limited as I was planning to squeeze in a workout in less than an hour. I didn’t want to have a bad day over smashed frozen pasta.

My workout went well, giving me more energy and optimism.  On the way home it started to snow, which wouldn’t be that bad if I was in the car but I had to take my bike because it is next to impossible to find a parking spot anywhere in the village in the morning.  I started to think about how ridiculous it is to have to bike somewhere just to get a parking spot. Normally, I actually prefer taking my bike before a workout, considering it a cardio addition to my workout and not having the stress of parking is worth it.  But not when it is snowing and -4.  My mood was turning sour.

I arrived back home, quickly showered, gathered up the grocery list, the mail that needed posting, and the DVDs that Little T needed to return to the library.  Checking the clock, I had just enough time to get to the school in time to greet Little T as he was coming down the stairs.  As I was about to turn left out onto the main street, a big truck was approaching too quickly for me to scoot in front of him.  As it went by, I noticed on the side of the truck it said “Fahrschule” (driver training).  The long line of cars behind was an indication that it was a rather new driver behind the wheel.  Great.

Joining the long line of cattle, I could barely keep the car in first gear, and felt my face getting hot with frustration.  I started blurting out my frustration, dashed with a few words of profanity:  “Can ya go any *%&* slower &%&-hole???”  I’m sure the driver behind me saw me mouthing all this stuff in my rear-view mirror and was rather entertained.  I finally made it to the school, five minutes after the bell rang. I ran, hoping the teacher kept the class a bit later as he sometimes does.  No such luck. There was Little T waiting at the door, but at least he was smiling.

“You’re late!” he announced.  I immediately went on about the slow-poke driver (leaving out the other name I had for him) but did remember Little T’s weekly chocolate bar which seemed to divert his focus on my tardiness.  Although, he did hold his hand out and said “Say you’re sorry you’re late”, which I did while shaking his little hand.  It’s a thing we do when we need to say sorry to each other – we shake hands and start again.

We walked towards the library while he excitedly told me about a party planned at the school next Tuesday.  When we reached the library, he ran in ahead like he normally does. As I was walking by the book return/sign-out desk, a woman sternly barked at me to leave my purse at the front.  I whirled around and spat out in English as an automatic reaction “You want me to leave my purse here? I don’t think so!”  Then trying to switch to German through my anger, she nonchalantly informed me it is a rule and pointed to lockers where I could leave it in safety.  As I was struggling with the lock, Little T came over and asked what I was doing. I blurted out before thinking “I need to lock up my purse because there are so many rules in this country!”

As I walked into the library with a grrr on my face, I started to realize that maybe I need to calm myself down before they take away Little T’s library card over his mother’s rude behavior.  While he was choosing his films, I started to think how much of an idiot I was, so while he was checking out I went up to the library lady an apologized for getting so angry, but tried to explain that up until today, no one had asked me to lock up my purse (and tried to not think about how stupid the rule was, but apparently they have had a problem with people swiping books and movies via their purse).  She then went on about the rule, that she matter-of-factly pointed to on a sheet posted to the wall, and explained that they don’t mean to be unfreundlich (unfriendly), but it’s a rule and they can’t allow one person to bring in their purse and the next one not.

Walking back to the car I again was thinking about why I overreacted to the librarian’s request to stash my purse.  As I was pulling out of the parking lot, a young woman who was slowing walking right in the middle of the road started to irritate me. I really don’t understand why people do that, especially after they just parked a car of their own.  Again, I found myself yelling out, luckily behind closed car windows, “Can ya move any slower???” And so, I finally gave into the reality that I was having a bad day.  Which was confirmed a few minutes later in another parking lot where I got all steamed up again waiting for the only spot to become available while the driver leisurely smoked a cigarette for five minutes before pulling out.

Little T and I headed for the post office. He ran ahead and tried to get through the door behind an older man ahead of him who didn’t hold it for him. As he was struggling to keep it opened, the man quickly came back to help him, apologizing that he didn’t see Little T.

Witnessing that moment of kindness suddenly released the tension in my body and mind, and from then on even though more frustrating things happened, I was able to cope with them by laughing.  Even after the comment Hubby made later after I re-told him my bad day. 

“Oh, you must be just PMSing!”

Pass me a flaky.

2 thoughts on “Having a Bad day

  1. Hi Heather…I don’t know Ralph’s comment at the end would have pushed me over the edge 😉 I hope you had a better day the next day :):)

    I hear ya though about bad days. The other day everything I did or touched turned into something bad and then to top it off while I was making dinner that night I decided to also bake cookies. What was I thinking!!! As I was getting the ingredients out of the cupboard, I knocked the sea salt bottle and if felt out of the cupboard. I wasn’t quick enough to catch it so it shattered everywhere. Sea salt was all over the place with shattered glass. Then as I was cleaning it up I saw a chunk of granite was chipped off our counter top. I guess when the salt bottle fell it hit an edge of the counter top so hard that the bottle actually chipped off an edge of the granite!!! Ugh – I was so mad. And when Chris came home with David from hockey and I told him I saw his face just sink…..ugh again!!

    So now I need a repair man to come in and try and fix the chipped countertop. In the big picture it’s no big deal, no one got hurt and the counter can be fixed but it certainly topped my bad day.

    Pass me a flaky too! 🙂


    • You need a case of flaky’s for that bad day, Pat! Ouch! Granite is so beautiful but can be so destructive. I smashed our coffee bodum on our granite counter top after taking it out of the dishwasher and reaching for it’s spot in the cupboard. That really hurt, as it was a mess to clean up, and no more coffee until it could be replaced!


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