At least it was for me this morning. It started with being almost late for work. And quickly went down hill from there.
The front gate lock at the daycare was frozen. This shouldn't be a big deal. I carry lock deicer in my purse for such occasions. BUT, have you ever tried putting lock deicer in a padlock, on a chain while holding a squirming, impatient toddler, a purse AND a large reusable shopping bag full of stuff? Well, let's just say it's pretty damn near impossible.
I tried putting the bags down and keeping the boy in my arms, but finally had to admit that there was no way I was getting that lock open without putting Liam down. As I expected, he stood beside me for all of about 17 seconds before he decided to wander down the sidewalk.
Now, this is where it probably got really interesting for the neighbor across the street who was scraping the ice off their car, but I am pretty sure that she was just watching my comedy show.
I grabbed Liam, just before he stepped out into the street (thankfully it is a very quiet street). I wrangle him around so that he is between me and the gate and proceed to squat enough to use my knees to hold him against the fence so that he can't take off again.
I repeatedly squirt lock deicer into the lock, shake it, wiggle the key, curse to myself and even resort to banging the lock against the fence all while trying to keep Liam from running away. Honestly, I have to admit, that if I was the neighbor across the street, I would probably be watching and laughing too! Or getting ready to call the police to say that a crazy woman was trying to break into the daycare with her kid.
Finally, I get the lock open. And I got a slight confidence boost as Liam yelled "Yeah Mommy!" before I grabbed my purse and bag off the sidewalk, looped my arm around his waist and dragged everything through the gate and up the snow and ice covered front steps. I put Liam down, to save dropping him at the top of the steps and frantically open the front door, knowing that the first children will be there any minute. Of course, as I am ready to go in the door, Liam tries to run away again, causing me to almost set off the building alarm.
You would think that once I get us into the building, things would have calmed down and returned to normal. NO! It was a mad rush just to get the lights turned on and curtains opened before the first child arrived. I had to get my co-worker to start her shift early to clean the snow and ice off the front steps.
The phone was ringing nonstop. I had one co-worker having major car issues and not sure if she was going to make it to work or not. Another didn't want to come in because she was ill. And the kids were coming faster than ever. Parents probably thought I was crazy the way I was running around trying to organize and figure out the best way to do everything while short two staff.
Slowly, things started to work themselves out. The flow of children into the building slowed considerable and a few had called to say they weren't coming in. My sick co-worker was coming, but stuck in traffic. And the co-worker with car problems expected to arrive by 9:30am.
And I finally, after and hour and a half of chaos began to breath normally again. And in a way, we were almost rewarded for the craziness we endured by a lower than usual number of children for the day. But if that's what it takes to get a quiet day, I'll take the busy ones, thank you!
Over the years, I've come to realize that the only thing predictable about working in daycare is the unpredictability! I've just got my fingers crossed that we got all the craziness of the week out of the way today!
And I'll be keeping my eyes out for the next Monday the 13th!