A few months ago, my well-loved gym shoes were worn out and it was decided that a new pair was needed. Husband, although his shoes were not as...well worn...as mine, decided that he, too, could use a new pair and it just so happened we found ourselves at The Large Sports Store where we were most likely buying yet another pair of cleats or goggles or socks for Small Children who, apparently, CONSTANTLY NEED THINGS. (On a somewhat related side note: Go buy stock in The Large Sports Store. They have all of our money.) So there we are, lamenting the joys and costs of Children Playing Sports, when Husband suggested that while we were conveniently located inside The Large Sports Store, we should look for new gym shoes.
I looked at him blankly and said, but the Children are here. He was like, um, yeah, they are. Then I was like, I mean, they’re like WITH us. And he was all, uh huh, like what’s your point? And then I was all:
OH YEAH! Husband doesn’t SHOP with the Children!
When Husband needs something, he just...goes to buy it. By himself. He can concentrate and not be distracted by Small Children playing “spy” inside the clothing racks. He can make a Thoughtful Choice about the purchase he is intending to make. I imagine it something like this: Hmmm....I like this shirt. Maybe I should take a couple different sizes with me to the dressing room where I will be able to take a good, long look and check myself out from different angles to decide that yes, this is a good shirt, or no, I do not like this shirt. I shall put it back.
It’s all so civilized.
Which is the OPPOSITE experience of attempting to purchase anything with Small Children.
Which is why I stared at him blankly while the Children were running sprints around us at the fake track The Large Sports Store decided painting around the Shoe Department was a good idea and wondered if Husband was actually in the same place as me or if he was some weird hologram my eyes had imagined because surely, SURELY, he can’t mean he wants to buy shoes, like...now.
But he did.
Now me, being well practiced in Making Bad Decisions While Shopping with Children, I knew the first step to this process was to just point to a few pair of shoes I liked when the Sales Person decided to eventually stroll over as slowly as possible to see if I needed help. Then while I am waiting the 27 minutes for him to come back, I will search The Large Sports Store for the Children, where I will find them shooting hoops in the middle of the aisle at that nifty basketball hoop that just so happens to be erected. I will then drag them back to the track so they can continue their sprints and I will see Husband trying on shoes, trying to make a Thoughtful Choice, AS IF NOBODY ELSE IS EVEN THERE. I see my little pile of shoe choices and try a pair on and notice it is suddenly too quiet and ask Husband where the Children went and he will not know so I will shove the shoes back in the box and tell him, here, these are fine and then I will go discover the Children have taken up golf, more like hockey golf, at the putting green The Large Sports Store has so thoughtfully provided. And I will drag them back to the Shoe Department to continue their sprints and we will all wait, as impatiently as possible, for Husband to debate on which shoe feels better, as he has one on each foot as he continues this Thoughtful Choice Process. And my head will try not to explode.
And when I get those new pair of shoes out to wear for the first time at the gym, I realized, yet again, that I made a terrible choice. As they hurt my feet. My gym shoes hurt my feet. That’s not cool. Heels hurt my feet, yes, but that is expected, required even, out of shoe that has a heel on it. Gym shoes: they are not supposed to hurt. But mine did.
Because of the Children.
I’m pretty sure I’ve racked up enough Bad Decisions While Shopping with Children that we could have perhaps gone to Fiji. But instead...I’m just gonna go look for some new shoes. By myself.