GWE and I have had a running joke since Justin was born. When the stress of parenthood becomes too much and we can’t take it anymore, one of us will look at the other and say, “I’m going out for cigarettes.”
Neither of us smokes.
It’s a half-hearted poke at the stories you hear about parents leaving their families in the middle of the night with excuses of “I’m going out for milk” or “I’m going to walk the dog….at 3am!” For us it means, if I don’t walk away right now – something bad will happen.
This morning, I took care of Garrett while GWE took Justin to his swim lesson plus a few additional errands. When they returned, I was standing in the front doorway and I looked ‘displeased.’ Garrett spent the morning destroying everything in his path and then throwing a fit when I wouldn’t rebuild (for the fourth time) Lego cars and trucks he had smashed.
Justin took one look at me and then turned around to GWE who was still standing the driveway. At the top of his lungs (and certainly loud enough for the neighbors to hear) he yelled, “Mommy!! Daddy’s going out for cigarettes!!!!”
Two thoughts immediately came to mind: 1) Justin has a tendency to repeat what he hears at home. I really hope he doesn’t get frustrated by something in school, announce that he’s “going out for some cigarettes,” and then simply walks out of the classroom. And, 2) Considering my son has never seen a cigarette, I would still consider this a parenting fail.