Lessons Learned 1, 2, 3

Written by Emily

Sometimes life’s lessons are subtle. Sometimes not so…

Lesson Number #1:

We took Noah and Chloe to see the Christmas Spectacular show at Radio City Music Hall on Tuesday.


It was a wonderful trip. Never mind that a nasty virus swept through our house that very night, the next day and for several days after. I can’t blame the Rockettes.

Following the show, we did some NYC sightseeing to get completely immersed in the Christmas spirit: the tree, the skaters, the windows, a $120 rickshaw ride. And there it is. A $120 rickshaw ride from FAO Schwarz to Macy’s. I think $120 is a fair price for my children’s terror as we weaved in and out of NYC traffic.


I think $120 is a fair price for the silly smiles exchanged between passersby and me. I’m sure the skinny, perspiring pedaler thought it was fair. Me? Not so much.

Lesson learned: Read the fine print and parenthetical asides. I was an English teacher, for crying out loud (and yes, I almost cried out loud).

Lesson Number #2:

On the same trip to NYC, I thought I’d take care of a little Christmas shopping–nothing major as my children revolt at the mere sight of stores. I needed a Zara gift card. A quick in and out, and I could check a gift off my list. I walked inside intent on completing my task when the security guard at the door pointed to a man with a stroller and then pointed to the door. My mouth dropped open. After a few laps around the store, my rage grew. I simply had to leave. This mother of three was not going to be a patron of this place. I was internally outraged. Outwardly, I gave my best clenched jaw.

As I left, I turned to the father, who was standing outside with the stroller and confirmed, more for solidarity than details, “Did he make you leave because you had a stroller?”

The father smiled and pointed to his son, “Oh, no. He’s eating.”

I looked at the little boy dripping and sticky with mango juice running down his chin. He was a slobbery, gooey mess. Even I was impressed at how thoroughly covered in food he had become.

(A few hours later, I sent my husband into another Zara. He purchased the gift card without incident.)

Lesson learned: Check my self-righteous indignation at the door. Or leave it with the messy toddler. He would, no doubt, destroy it.

Lesson Number #3:

Back from NYC the next day, surrounded by the comforts of home, I let myself get a bit too comfortable. My hyper-alert mom radar was dangerously undercharged from lack of sleep.

I changed Sylvie’s diaper, wrapped it up and continued the process…until Chloe demanded my attention. I turned for a moment to address Chloe’s needs, leaned away from Sylvie, who was pants-less on the floor and turned back to find her waving the soiled diaper like a maraca.

Naturally, I screamed. A log of feces spiraled out of the diaper and landed next to my darling babe. Still screaming, I grabbed the diaper and lunged to get the giant turd. Somehow my one-year old beat me to it and picked it up like a regular plaything.

Still screaming, I wrangled the thankfully-solid mass from her hands. I then began the disinfecting process. That was Wednesday. Still screaming, I finished the disinfecting process five minutes ago.

Lesson learned: Focus until the job is done…especially when poop is involved. But focus, in general, I think.

6 comments for “Lessons Learned 1, 2, 3

  1. December 17, 2012 at 9:22 am

    I needed this laugh!!
    I felt like I was right there with you and if I had been, we would have both been laughing, screaming and grossed-out together. Us Moms really do see/smell/touch/experience it ALL.
    BTW- I love the photo of you and the kids in front of the Broadway poster!

  2. December 17, 2012 at 9:27 am

    Laugh, scream, cry…you know, it’s always a mommy cocktail of emotion!

  3. Julia V
    December 17, 2012 at 9:56 am

    Mrs. Gallo I just love reading all these little stories you write. I sure do miss you hope you’re doing well.

    • December 17, 2012 at 9:57 am

      Thanks so much, Julia! I miss you, too! I’m looking forward to some of your famous pastries!

  4. December 17, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    OMG that sounds familiar! I’am still laughing!!!

  5. Kathleen Gallo
    December 18, 2012 at 9:49 am

    The diaper story REALLY made me laugh! THAT lesson will always make you TOTALLY focused when diapering (>:) I looked at the various “rides” in NY longingly, and smiled at all the riders, but the prices empowered my feet!!

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