It’s Friday night. Another week bites the dust and millions of people are ready to kick back and enjoy the weekend. So how does this penny pinching parent spend her Friday evening? The last Friday evening of 2012? In the lovely local laundromat.
Yup, that’s right this blog is brought to you from a plastic white table in the middle of a cold laundromat, with only the gently hum and whirling of machines as background noise. Apparently, this is not the cool spot on a Friday night as I am the only one present. For some reason, the local laundromat has gigantic windows in the front, nearly covering ceiling to floor. Do they want those driving by to look in at the joy and fun happening in the laundromat? Anyone who did tonight saw me typing away furiously at my lap top, rocking a gray hoodie, black yoga pants and sneaks. The suggested apparel of the laundromat.
And laundromats are NOT Penny Pinching recommended. $14.50 later, I have three loads going. Ouch. I do have my own washer and dryer at home (sooo never taking them for granted again!) and our water is not frozen despite this wonderful Northern New York winter we are in the midst of. So what brings someone like me to a place like this? Vomit.
Yep, you read that right. Vomit. My youngest is ill. We braved the nasty roads for a trip to Urgent Care last night and she was diagnosed with tonsillitis and sinus infection. They warned me it would get worse before it got better. They were not lying!
I headed to bed around 11:00. She had fallen asleep sitting in the chair with me and I let her sleep like that for awhile, since her coughing fits had been severe before she fell asleep. I carried her up to bed with me. When she is sick, I prefer she sleep with us so I can keep a close eye on her all night. My oldest daughter had febrile seizures so it became a nervous habit to have the little ones sleep with us when ill. I can feel their bodies warm up when a fever hits and I am right there in case they throw up.
The minute I laid her down the coughing began. Minutes before she got sick, I could tell it was about to happen from the force of her coughing. So I woke up my husband and asked him to go get a “puke bowl” and did what any mother in my position would do. I cupped my hands, placed them under her mouth and let her let loose in my hands, all while cursing the fact that I didn’t have a third arm to pull her hair back and a fourth arm to rub her little back while she heaved. Oh, the joys of motherhood.
Now I can’t imagine how many of you are gagging from just reading that. However I just go into Xena, Warrior Mother mode and instinct takes over. Someone get me a medal and a cookie. Chocolate chip, please!
Pause while I stop to realize that I brought the party with me to the laundromat. Two cars have pulled in and brought with them a party of three launderers. Now a third car has arrived with two more. Cheers to the freaking weekend, as Rihanna would say. Let’s clink together our detergent bottles.
So anyways FOUR sets of bedding later I decided that a trip to the dreaded laundromat would be necessary. I don’t feel so bad putting the water temp on scorching hot to kill off any lingering germs. Plus I get the work that would typically take half a day done in one hour.
When I turned 30, my friends and family welcomed me to the Dirty Thirties Decade. Fresh out of my twenties, I envisioned shots, pool tables, DJ’s and dance floors. Heels and thongs galore. However I have come to realize that the term “Dirty” in this phrase was actually referencing the endless parade of dirty clothes, dirty dishes, dirty faces, dirty towels and dirty rooms of the house that seem to trail behind families. I didn’t realize that I would trade in my Friday nights of dancing for Friday nights of laundry. But what I didn’t realize most of all, was just how much I would not mind the trades, how I would not miss the nights out when compared to the nights in. How late night puking would be only a result of the stomach bug or a nasty case of post nasal drip induced coughing fits instead of Amaretto Sours or Smirnoff.
It’s important to see the beauty in moments like this, to not take a second of life for granted. To take laundering four sets of puked splattered bedding and giggle about it, poke fun at it. Life is dirty, messy and spontaneous. When you hit a spin cycle, you can either hang on, close your eyes and enjoy the ride or you can spiral out of control.
Cheers to the weekend, to the laundromat, to the dirties of life and above all to laughter!