It was supposed to be a perfectly innocent shopping trip. I mean, surely bumping shoulders with 200 eager-beaver shoppers on a weekend is not anybody’s idea of fun. It was a simple plan – we would browse the aisles, check out some furniture, pick up anything that excited us terribly and get the hell out. It was supposed to be mundane, ordinary, yawn-worthy. It was surely not supposed to go down in history – as the IKEA TRIP FROM HELL.
I’ll admit it, albeit sheepishly. I have been one of those Mothers. Looking disdainfully at other Mothers while their children have a public meltdown. Giving a jolly good “tsk tsk” in the supermarket at Mothers who are not able to control their unruly children. I have even gone as far as glaring at tween girls who block the aisles while they are glued to their smart phones (possibly) tweeting about how unbelievable hot Tom Hardy is (which i will agree, he is). I have always assumed i would never catch myself in the dreadful position of having to handle an unreasonable, pint-sized bully (who is my own flesh and blood).
So when we took our toddler daughter to IKEA, i was blissfully unaware of what was in store. Let me break it down for you. It was not pretty, and that is putting it mildly. There was lots of screaming and running wildly from one department to the next. There was jumping on clean sofas while wearing filthy shoes. There were curious little toddler hands picking up delicate crystal champagne flutes, while i jumped at each one and saved them (and myself) from a very painful end. There was vigorous pulling at every plant, flower and leaf in the gardening section. There was “what color this Mama ?” loudly while pointing at each and every photo frame stacked neatly on the shelves (and she would not budge until i answered). There was lots of pencil stealing (the kind which they keep at every nook and corner for customers to make a note of their item numbers) and these pencils were then used to scribble on crisp white linen sheets.There was systematic yanking at every curtain on display (both shower and non-shower).
She befriended a couple of other toddlers and they wrecked havoc together for all of 5 minutes, till the other parents sheepishly intervened. She also insisted that she push our trolley around, as she wanted to be helpful to us, but ended up knocking into the shins and ankles of some very upset old people. She opened every draw and peered into every mirror. She pressed every switch and rolled around on every carpet. She sang, danced and laughed. I would even go so far to say that she had the absolute best time. She was so overstimulated with all the colors, people and activity that she knocked out in the car and slept for 12 hours straight, thereby giving me a full nights sleep (my first in many weeks).
This weekend we go to Ace Hardware.