This past week Youngest Kid decided she wanted to go to a concert in Boston on Friday night with a friend. Originally she thought she would drive. That got nipped in the bud very quickly on our end. Fortunately we had a little reinforcement when Oldest Kid’s best friend who was visiting and happened to mention that she would rather drive in New York than in Boston. It’s always a huge help when someone much closer to your child’s age can affirm a point you’re trying to make that was met with complete and utter dismissal because you are a dinosaur.
The plan then changed to driving part of the way and catching the subway into Boston. The idea of these two girls trying to find their way around the subway system (by the way, Government Center – the hub – is closed for 2 years for construction. Great.) and then driving back and not arriving home until who-knows-when was just a little too much for me to handle.
My mind started spinning, along with my stomach. I wanted so very much to let them figure it out on their own, but not like this, and not when I knew I’d be insane until they got home sometime in the middle of the night.
So here’s how yesterday’s events unfolded, via text messaging with my very understanding and relenting spouse:
Me: So… how do you feel about driving to Boston?
Him: Um… why?
Me: Why not. I am really having angst over them doing this on a Friday night.
Him: Does she know about this?
Me: No but trust me, she will be ecstatic. We could drop them off, find a place to park and do whatever… eat, walk around…
Him: (knowing this wasn’t even worth arguing about) Sure.
Me: It would be 2 less hours I am having anxiety over where they are.
Him: (in typical guy fashion) And that could be worth a LOT to me…
Me: (do they even try to disguise what they’re thinking?) Oh yes, I will owe you.
Him: Always wanted to drive to Boston on a Friday night.
Me: Well now you can cross that off your bucket list.
I should mention that the last time Youngest Kid went to a concert at the same Boston venue it started at 8 p.m. and was over in less than an hour, and she and her friends had to wait around for more than two hours while the parents of one of the friends were at another event. They passed the time wandering through a nearby Rite-Aid and then loitering around Dunkin Donuts where the staff was less than cordial. Fortunately it wasn’t too sketchy of an area.
The concert this past Friday night also started at 8, so I was sure we’d be back on the road by maybe 9:30 at the latest. Yeah… no. The first act came onto the stage twenty minutes late. The headliner finished up at 11 p.m. Guess who spent three hours last night walking up and down streets in the neighborhood only to end up loitering around the same Dunkin Donuts?
I should probably mention that Spouse and I are typically sacked out on the sofa by 9:30 at the latest on a Friday night, being that we wake up starting at 5 a.m. for work all week. This was way beyond our bedtime, and I knew Blind Dog and Demanding Cats would have no mercy by 7 this morning.
Some of you might think it was too much mothering to take this trip. Others might be mumbling that the concert never should have been an option. It’s a call that’s not easy to make sometimes, and I can’t honestly tell you I felt it was the right thing to do either way. This is just how these things go when you’re a parent – you wing it and hope you’re making the right choice for yourself as well as your kids.
I can tell you my almost-20-year-old was more than okay with it – in fact, after stressing herself out about wanting to be excited but feeling nervous and a little overwhelmed about the whole thing, she was just as happy about it as I thought she would be – and extremely thankful.
If we hadn’t done it this way they probably wouldn’t have made it to the concert until long after it started, and they most likely would have been facing a two-hour drive home well after midnight. And guess who would have been awake all night in a panic?
Naturally I was the one the animals woke up this morning, because everyone else in this house is sleeping like a rock. That’s fine, I can sit in our backyard and sip my coffee and enjoy the peace and quiet for a while. And I can start figuring out how to pay off my debt to the Spouse for going along with me (as if he had a choice).
I can pretty much guarantee it won’t involve loitering around Dunkin Donuts.