I recently took my daughter to the mall and it reminded me why I hate the mall. The hummingbird loves it so I endure it after taking a xanax. Not only is the drive 40 minutes away, and I hate driving, but crowds just aren’t my thing either. But, there’s always queso at the mall so besides dealing with the mall bullshit, I eat my beloved tortilla chips and queso at a restaurant that’s in the mall.
That cheesy, delicious, creamy, spicy queso makes me do it.
Cheese has superpowers over me.
But, I’m getting off topic.
The mall fucking sucks and I hate it but I go because after spending half a day at home with a 7 year-old that’s bouncing off the walls and running me ragged, I need to get the hell out of the house. The library is usually our go to place in that situation but on those beautiful, glorious paydays, I have to buy shit I don’t need.
Enter the mall.
Straight away, I have to get my queso and tortilla chips. If I’m full of cheese, I won’t have as much desire to ram people with my body while walking through the mall. It’s the people who stand there talking and are completely oblivious to the fact that other people exist. This person is usually standing in the middle of the aisle so you can’t get past even though you’ve said excuse me twice. They can also be right in front of a store blocking the walkway but you can’t pass because a herd of people decide to come in the opposite direction.
My daughter usually rides the carousel twice and I stand there waving at my daughter every single time she comes my way and take a picture. And usually, half way through, she starts to ignore me while I continue to wave and take 30 pictures of her, none of which turn out.
Then, she’ll ask for a punching balloon thingamajig and each time, I’ll say no.
On we go to one of the stores but wait, what’s that ahead? It’s the fucking Build-A-Bear. That damn store. The hummingbird tries to drag me in while I drag her away and look at that, a small group of people or a family is standing in front of the store, talking, while in the opposite direction, a crowd of people come by like a swarm of bees so we have no choice but to stop and wait which is just enough time for my daughter to use her super strength to get a few feet into Build-A-Bear and just long enough for me to glance at the prices and think what the fuck, break into a cold sweat because an employee of the store eyes us and starts walking our way, and then over-riding my stuffed to the gills stomach full of queso to find my super strength to zoom out of there.
Finally, we’re a few stores down and safe. Or so I thought. There’s a kiosk that has these smushy balls that are sticky and splat on the table and that sounds perverted. For some unknown reason, there’s a magnetic pull that brings kids to this place. After navigating my way from the sticky balls, we head into one of the clothing stores and even though I say we’re just going to look, there’s a cha-ching of some of that payday money.
We start walking to the next store and things are all shiny and calling my name like Sephora or The Body Shop but my daughter’s whiny “MOM” voice that is so bad, dogs can hear, either gets me out of their quick or makes me avoid those places completely.
There’s a lipstick I just have to get and that lip balm that I’ll lose in the next few days smells really good so I can’t leave without that.
Around this time, my mind tunes the whiny voice out because there’s too many shiny, pretty things to look at. That’s when I do what I said I’d never do as a mom but have done since she’s understood it. Bribing is a beautiful thing when you’re in that kind of situation.
I promise her she can buy one thing at the other clothing store within a certain amount of money “if you give mommy a few minutes more.”
Oh, there’s the cocoa butter body butter. I must get that too!
Before going into the hummingbird’s clothing store, I remind her that we’re only getting ONE thing. That’s it. Just one thing.
Finally, sweet freedom from hell on earth is just out the door but wait. I get the puppy dog eyes and “please, please, please mom, can I ride the carousel once more?”
While I’m waiting, we’re by the food court and all the smells start making my stomach rumble. The queso has done it’s job in the beginning but now I’m starving and there’s pizza, and Chinese food, and burgers, oh my.
Once the hummingbird is done, we head to the frozen yogurt place in the food court because it’s so smart to sugar your kid up before our 40 minute drive back home. I’m smart like that.
After that, fresh air and freedom from food court smells, crowds, and spending lots of money, we head to the car.
Oh shit, where is the fucking car. I always make a mental note of where I parked but forget it in less than five seconds. Fortunately, my very hyper, sugared up 7 year-old sees our car and it’s home at last.
But what’s that sound? It’s my bank account gently weeping. If only it knew that if we were to get into the clutches of the Build-A-Bear employees, it would be doing the ugly cry from buying all the overpriced bear shit that the place involves.
So, I reassure my bank account that we won’t experience the mall again for another few months. I do leave out the fact that there’s plenty of stuff just sitting there waiting to be bought in my Amazon shopping cart.