This weekend, it took Andrew and me one and a half hours to leave the house with Lucia and Greta. First Lucia melted down after spotting some Halloween decorations in the storeroom. She wanted to take them all with her on a walk. I denied her this wish after giving her two of the pumpkin cutouts. Of course, I should have just said fine, take them, but by then we were deep into a tantrum that I simply could not reward by giving in. Then Greta needed to eat and be changed. Then everyone needed coats and slings and shoes and snacks. We did make it out eventually, and we did make it to a playground where Lucia and Andrew kicked a ball around for a while. And on the way home we even spontaneously stopped at a little pizzeria with a happy hour and had a fast—very fast—pizza while Lucia dipped her straw into my water glass and then dabbed it on the wall while murmuring “Mess. Mess.” Andrew left a large tip.
Yesterday I took the girls out by myself for the first time, around the corner to the mailbox. Andrew was working from home, phone at the ready in case I needed him to rescue me. We made it, however. When we got to the mailbox and I said we had to turn around to go home, Lucia said, “No. Playground” and began walking in the opposite direction; but I managed to get her to comply by suggesting we collect acorns. Anyway, it was a start. A small start, but a start.