Saturday, March 7, 2009

Back to Reality

Land.... My babies..... My routine..... The gym......My babies.......No more buffets.......

These are the things my soul was screaming for that last day of the cruise. It didn't really get too bad until the Ellis' left for the airport a few hours before us. Their leaving marked the end of the vacation.

I was so happy with our decision to fly instead of drive to San Diego. The car trip home would have been torturous.

So we landed in San Jose. I had my phone turned on in a matter of milliseconds. I just wanted to hear my kids' sweet voices. Mercedes' cheery and enthusiastic greeting. Beau's raspy voice with a hint of embarassment behind his words. Reef's interrogation bringing the inflection of his voice to a higher & higher pitch with each question. I could almost see Mercedes' bright eyes and the wide smile. My ears were already tickling with Beau's intoxicating giggles and infectious laughter. I could already feel Reef's warm little palms upon my cheeks or the back of my neck as we looked at eachother, foreheads pressed together. I'd been daydreaming about these things for days now.

Then reality set in. They were still in school. I wouldn't be able to talk to them for at least another hour. But wait. Reef's not in school!!! My thumbs dial at a feverish pace. The annoying beep...beep...beep of the busy tone pierces my ear. I die a little from dissapointment.

With no other hope of speaking to any of my offspring in the next 5-10 minutes I decide to check my texts. I silently escort my husband to the men's bathroom and stand watch over our carry-on bag -- all the while scanning my incoming messages. There's one from Annette. And another. Oh no. Is she trying to get a hold of me because something happened to my kids? Whew. Just a text to say hello and see if we debarked the ship, yet. Brandon returns and I hand the bags over to him. Without looking up I tell him I've got to use the restroom, too. I continue walking (and texting) until I reach the entrance.

I notice the smell right away. It's very faint. But I was looking forward to an odorless restroom. After 9 days on a ship certain smells can start to seep through the pipes. Oh, well. From the corner of my eye I see the silouette of a tall person washing their hands. I feel so rude as I almost bump into somebody coming out of a stall. I should have at least looked up when I said "Excuse me". But she didn't respond to my apology whatsoever so I don't feel so bad anymore. I realize what people must be thinking. "Is she going to keep texting while using the toilet?" I enter the stall while finishing up my message. I press SEND. I turn around to close and lock the door.

That's when reality sets in... again.

I'm surrounded by men. Men at the sink. Men walking in. Men walking out. Men drying their hands. Men facing the wall (urinals). Fat men. Skinny men. Short men. Tall men. Old men. Young men. Men, men, men!!!!! But not one of them giving me any eye contact. Thank goodness!!!!! I die a little of embarassment, anyway.

I open my phone back up. To text Annette and tell her what I've done. Not so much to incriminate myself but to give me something to do so I can maintain our no-eye-contact status while I hastily exit.

I suppress my laughter. I hope noone noticed me exiting the men's room. I frantically look for my husband. For his open arms to hug me and tell me it's OK. To laugh with me. To offer words of comfort. He's walking away with his head to the side, staring at me out of the corner of his eye. He's smiling. He knows. He's laughing. At me. He's embarassed, too. Of me.

I catch up to him. "Why didn't you stop me?" I ask accusingly. "I didn't know. I wasn't sure where you went. I turned around and you were gone." He's telling the truth. Dang. There's nobody to blame but myself. And the airport designers for giving you the option of 2 entrances for each bathroom. And Verizon Wireless for even offering the option of texting in the first place.

I've done this once before, you know. At a McDonald's. I was pregnant at the time. (I don't know if that's really relevant but think people tend to cut you more breaks if your pregnant.) I walked in to see urinals on the wall. Understanding washed over my mind immediately. That time I was lucky. The restroom was vacant.

I look back on my airport experience now and can't figure out if it really happend in slow motion or if it's just my masochistic mind forcing me to remember it that way. Like I'm teaching myself a lesson or something. Like I'm telling myself to pay more attention. Like I'm sternly yelling to not let it happen again or it's only gonna get worse. Well, Self.... lesson learned.

What a harsh way to step back into reality. Whew.... I need a vacation!


Eric Ellis said...

For a second there I thought you just went ahead and USED the men's room! Ewwww! You are so hilarious! And I can totally see the look on Brandon's face when you came out! I'm totally having Tiff withdrawals!

Janae Sowards said...

That was such a funny story about the men's room. I could have only imagined. Loved seeing your guys pics. Looked like a fun and enjoyable trip. Tropical (Vacays) are the best!!!

-Janae & Justin-