At 8:00pm, the toddler turned to me and said, “You know, mom, there aren’t any other kids here.”
And she was right. It was prime dinner time on a Friday night, in a Top Chef’s restaurant filled to bustling with people out on the town.
Next to me, my mother-in-law Kristin rocked my sleepy five month old to sleep. My four year munched on the remains of her honey-eggplant fritas, date confit cake, and Dad’s thali plate.
We had reservations for a reasonable 5:30pm, but somehow managed a fairly leisurely multi-hour dining experience with a toddler and infant. I figured I was either stupid, lucky, or brave. I settled on a mix of the three.
Granted, it could’ve went downhill when the toddler spilled her water in Dad’s lap. Or when I discovered there wasn’t a changing table in the bathroom. Or when the fancy ladies sitting next to us gave us the stink eye.
But it didn’t. How’s this for a Jedi mind trick:
I never considered there would be another option than to have a great dinner.
Sure, the fancy cocktail probably helped, but I honestly wonder how much we parents deprive ourselves by underestimating our kids… and ourselves.
What’s the worst that could’ve happened? We’d have to eat our (AWESOME) food at home? Guess what: That still didn’t involve cooking and dishes.
The same lesson extends beyond parenting, too.
Try. Maybe fail. Try again.
Nine times out of ten, the benefits outweigh the risk.
Bon appétit, and may the Force be with you.