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The Home Stretch

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Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Home Stretch

I know I said we could make it, but . . .

Hours after clicking "Publish" we saw hail. Flash floods. Lightening. Howling winds. TORNADOS! Etc. Et al. I don't know if the photo above captures the gravity of the weather situation, but, listen - I grew up in Maryland. A land of crab cakes and moderate weather. A land where there do not exist sirens to warn sleeping citizens of impending meteorological doom.

Will woke at 5:30am, probably from the sounds of the storm. I thought I heard sirens, but I wasn't completely sure because the soft breaking waves of the ocean (via sound machine) were drowning it out. I soothed him back to sleep and as soon as I crawled into bed, the ocean stopped. It took me a few seconds to realize the power went out. That was when I really heard the tornado sirens. Texting my mom, who was raised in Oklahoma as a child and saw many a tornado, seemed like a good idea at the time. I had gone to the upstairs hallway with the baby to get away from windows. Seemed like a nice spot to camp out and nod off.


Big Momma D called me immediately and implored me to get downstairs because "the whole top floor could be ripped off." Lots of deets like that in the pitch black power outage with howling winds outside. She proceeded to tell me things like how her mother would drag a mattress over them, would dress them in their winter coats, and told me that if I heard the tornado to go to the corner of our freezing cold garage. "It sounds like a freight train. When you hear it get in the corner of the garage by the stairs and make a triangle of life."

Thank you, mom, for your expertise, but I don't think I'll be calling you next time in my moment of terror.

Moving along.

We did, in fact, survive long enough to face our next life-threatening obstacle: cross-country travel with a two month old. 

After much hemming and hawing, I agreed to take baby Will down to Maxwell AFB to visit husband Will at JAG School. Shockingly, there are no direct flights from St. Louis to Montgomery and we had to stay in a hotel with the baby, who is not a great night sleeper. In a rare bout of first-time mom confidence (momfidence?... no), I bit the bullet and booked the flight. I then spent the next few weeks in terror at the thought of actually traveling alone with the poop machine that is Baby Brez. How would I carry everything and get through security??? Where would I park??? Would he cry from the air pressure??? Would people stare at me nursing in public??? Would he spit up on the passenger next to us??? Would he get sick from the airplane germs??? Does he need identification??? .... and so on and so forth.

The Mobester was clutch.

I guess you could say I over-prepared. I knew exactly which hand would carry what piece of luggage, what pockets my phone, ID, and tickets would go in, when I would feed him, etc., and honestly, the trip down went without incident. Momfidence points for Team Brez.

Will greeted us in Montgomery and we had a nice little reunion.

And the remainder of our trip was fantastic.

We showed off the babe to Will's JASOC buds and my college lax teammate, explored the three tiny streets that make up downtown Montgomery, and even went out to dinner sans baby.

On Palm Sunday we went to confession and Mass on base and it ruled. The weather was so nice by the end of Mass, baby Will decided to go shirtless (hubba hubba). And then we went brunching, which is one of my top 5 favorite activities. 

I got to see what JAG School life was all about. And although some of my resentment toward Will was well-founded (beautiful weather, adult interaction, free time for recreational activities), I saw the dungeon cell they put him up in to live in for two whole months. Shared bathroom and all! And the water pressure! Oh, the horrific water pressure! The grass is always greener . . .

Someone really enjoyed the free HBO and king-sized bed at our hotel.

The trip home was a little more hairy. It started out like this:

Censored a la Eve in the Garden of Eden. SINFUL, I say! 

Will had his first Stage 5 blowout before we were to board our flight. I was wearing him in the Moby and felt it happen. And, I just knew. I just knew. Luckily, I arrived at the airport with a ton of time to spare because I was still a little paranoid despite our easy trip down, and you know it was a good thing because it took me twenty minutes to give him the old diaper-wipe-baby-bath and get him changed. Unfortunately for him, I didn't bring a spare pair of pants, so baby Brez was pantsless for the rest of our trip. No big deal in the 80 degree Alabama weather, but we live in the polar vortex, so you can use that info for a very weak literary foreshadow . . .

The first flight was uneventful, however, we landed in Charlotte and had to do that walk/jog to our next flight across the airport. I knew I had to feed him, so I took him out of the Moby and he started screaming. There was a scream-match with another baby on the flight (everyone around was very entertained!), but luckily for us, Will lost. He nursed without incident and was happy. So happy that he puked allllll down the front of me. I was so momfident going into the day that I did not pack an extra shirt for myself. Fail. But I felt lucky that all the fluid stuck to our side of the armrest. Once we were in the air I again felt and heard the inevitable BM. I got up (from my window seat!!!) and could not find our diaper bag. It felt like an eternity I was searching for it. Finally I found it with the help of about five other passengers (where I left it, of course) behind some other bags. 

When we arrived in St. Louis we were greeted by 40 degree temps and horizontal rain. The wheel on my big piece of checked luggage had been damaged, so I was dragging it around in anger, shaking my one spare fist in the air. And of course the exit I needed was under construction, so I had to walk all the way around to my shuttle . . .  in the cold rain . . . with Will's bare legs hanging out of the Moby. (I tried unsuccessfully to cover him with a blanket.) He slept through it all! God bless him. When we got to our car, I fed him, heard another BIG BM (it never stops) and had to change him with the door open and the wind and rain whipping into the car. Baby Brez handled the trip like a pro. A true jetsetter.

Will is home for good TOMORROW! Dare I say we made it? I don't want a last-minute rogue hurricane headed for our direction, so I will just hold off. But I will wait with excited anticipation. 

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At April 17, 2014 at 2:08 PM , Blogger Janine Doyle said...

You are the blowout champion. I'm so impressed. I would have been cleaning the baby with my hysterical tears from that day of travelling.

At April 17, 2014 at 2:27 PM , Blogger Theresa Breslin said...

Luckily, the worst of it came in the beginning of the day just after my coffee! If it came at the end when I was hungry and exhausted, you bet I would have been sobbing like a crazy person and later eating my feelings in French fries. (Instead, I just enjoyed the French fries for no dramatic reason.)

At April 19, 2014 at 12:52 AM , Blogger Amanda Marie said...

Oh, I totally freak out like your mom during tornados but I've seen some pretty scary stuff in Alabama.
Also, you are super mom. I would have lost it on the flight back. But someday you can tell baby Will about the time you just wanted to visit daddy and he kept projectile pooping all over the airport and plane. That stuff is great for conversation when you're taking his prom pictures someday.

At April 21, 2014 at 2:35 PM , Blogger Daija said...

He looks so happy about his stage 5 blowout!

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