April 6, 2012
After a busy day, including an egg hunt at work, I got to leave work an hour early on (Good) Friday. Sunshine and temps in mid-50s seemed like a tempting combo for the playground by the beach. Jill didn't seem to mind that it was windy as hell, and I froze my ass off while she crawled through the tunnels and took the slide head first. ...I almost had a heart attack. Somehow I bribed her back into the car and we drove to a playground closer to the house, and not situated directly off the beach. Three older kids came and Jill stared as the two girls pumped their legs and their swings went higher and higher. I could see the wheels turning into her head. She ended playing with the little boy and he coached her as she climbed. Jill thought she made new friends and she ran after them as they crossed the field. I ran after Jill. They reached their yard then shut and secured the gate just as Jill approached the entrance. She grasped the gate. They didn't let her in. I didn't expect, or want, them to. But Jill did. She looked so sad and defeated. I attempted to play the upbeat Mom, told the kids we'd see them at the playground another day and asked Jill if she wanted to race me back to the car. She loved running and watching my feet move faster and faster. Too bad that meant she wasn't concentrating on her own feet and she fell multiple times. The first time she stayed for a bit, enjoying the soft grass and picking her first bright yellow dandelion. "Look Mom!!" she yelled and we continued our race. Jill held the weed - excuse me, flower - above her head and smiled. Then she faceplanted into the grass one more time.