Monday, February 25, 2008

The restaurant scene

After being stuck in the house and feeling sick last week, we decided to go out Saturday. No one was feeling 100 percent yet, but my husband and I were desperate to get out of the house. Between the sicknesses and the snow, we had a severe case of cabin fever. So we packed up the babies and my stepson and invited my aunt to meet us at a restaurant for an early dinner.

It started off very well. Sophia was well-behaved and actually eating and Ryan sat happily in his car seat, but this lasted for about 10 minutes.

Before our food even came to the table Ryan had enough of sitting in the car seat. I picked him up and he ate a little, but before long he was tired. He still wasn't feeling great and he was ready for another nap.

From the beginning, we've been very consistent that when Ryan is tired, we lay him down so he can fall asleep. We don't rock him to sleep and we don't feed him to sleep. Because of this, he's generally good at getting himself to sleep. (We're still working on getting him to fall back to sleep after waking in the middle of the night, but we're talking small victories here)

Anyway, in the restaurant, Ryan is tired and letting the entire restaurant know that he needs a nap. He doesn't want to be held, he won't take a bottle and he didn't want baby food. If we stood up with him and walked around he'd quiet for a bit and then start screaming again.

He wanted to lay down and go to sleep. Nothing else would soothe him.

When our food got to the table, one of us shoved some food in our mouths while the other held the baby. With the addition of my aunt and stepson, Sophia was kept occupied and my aunt helped hold Ryan. But this doesn't fly for very long out in public.

After about 10 minutes, I'm sweating, nervous and really ready to go home. I feel like we are making a scene. I just want to leave so that all the good people around us can eat in peace. I take the baby from my husband and stand up, knocking the car seat off the chair and onto the floor with a loud bang. A nice woman at a table next to us ran over to help pick up the car seat.

Now I know we're making a scene and it's time to go.

But we still have to pack up the kids and pay the bill, so my husband puts Ryan's jacket on and takes him outside. At this point, Ryan is screaming uncontrollably as the hostess seats a nice family on either side of our table.

With Ryan outside I can think. I look up and see Sophia standing up in the high chair trying to climb out.

Like lightening, we put on Sophia's coat, grab our stuff, pay the bill and race out the door. As soon as the car is on, Ryan stops crying.

If we were at home, we would have put Ryan in his crib and he would've fallen asleep and we would have had a peaceful dinner. So, we'll be eating in for now, until cabin fever sets in again and we forget how bad it really is to take the kids out to dinner.