On Easter weekend, I decided to head down to Indiana again to Dan. I originally planned on leaving Friday afternoon but Mother Nature had other plans. The day brought first ice and then snow. I think we got about 6inches on top of a nice layer of ice. I’m no meteorologist so I can’t say for sure but that’s my best guesstimating.
Dan had a really sweet but challenging idea that I should bring down Matt’s kids (Braeden & Jillian) too. I knew that they wanted to see him too so I decided that I would. Braeden & Jillian were excited to go down and Emma & Gerrit were ecstatic that they got to ride down there with us.
We set off in Saturday morning. There was still a nice sheet of ice on the passing lane of the highway so I was pretty nervous and pieces on the right lane. People were going about 50mph and that seemed like a decent speed but I was praying the road conditions improved or we would be on the road forever.
The roads started getting better probably about 25miles into the journey. They were wet and the shoulder was still ice covered but we were able to pick up our speed. That is until all the water/dirt/grime started covering my windshield. I pressed the washer button and it only came out my passenger side. Ugh! I kept holding it down hoping that some of it could migrate to the driver’s side but no luck. I thought, maybe if that semi in front of me could spray some water up, I could get one good wipe in. To no avail… it just made it worse. It was getting to the point that I could no longer see out of my side so I had to pull over at the next off ramp. I get off but there is nothing off the highway so I just pullover on the side of the road and throw snow on my windshield. I try to get the ice off my sprayer but it must have been frozen inside because it still wouldn’t work. I decide to try to get past Lansing and then stop for more washer fluid and maybe poor it directly on the sprayer. That was about 15miles away and I really wanted to get at least there before I stopped again.
We make it onto Highway 69 and I find an exit with a gas station. By this time, I have completely run out of fluid. I have to go in and buy some fluid and I figure all the kids should get out and potty while we’re pulled over. We all get out which is no small feat since the girls were buckled in the back and the boys were in the middle. There just isn’t an easy way to do it when they are all in car/booster seats. But we manage and go inside. Gerrit decides that this is the perfect time to become a monster and starts crying and being defiant. He is refusing to pee. I know he must have to go at least a little and I keep telling him to go pee. He starts screaming hysterically like I’m beating him and I can only imagine what the 19yr old clerk was thinking. I’m amazed she didn’t call the police for child abuse because he was acting as though I was hitting him instead of telling him to pee. After 5min of threatening, yelling and screaming… he finally goes and we can go out and buy some fluid. I get the kids reloaded into the car and get the washer in the car and make it work.
I start to pull away and see a McDonald’s across the street. I’m thinking it’s a good idea to stop now and prevent having to stop again anytime soon so I pull up and order some chicken nuggets. The person at the drive thru tells me they are serving breakfast until 11am. I check my phone for the time… it’s 10:56am. I say ‘So I have to wait 4min to order the chicken nuggets?’. The stupid woman says yes and I can feel my blood boiling. I’ve just gone thru hell with Gerrit in the bathroom and now this idiot is telling me I have to wait 4min for some flippin nuggets. I start to just sit there for my wait but I saw the gas station next to it had cheap gas and I figure I might as well kill the time filling up. Gerrit notices that I am driving away without food and starts screaming hysterically. This only infuriates me more to the stupid chick working the window who has no idea what it’s like to sit with a hysterical kid who needs to eat in order to be normal again. I’m sure in her life, it’s just a simple sit and wait patiently but when you are 3 and starving, not so much.
I gas up and make it back exactly at 11am. I somehow manage to get the food ordered over Gerrit’s crying and give it to the kids. But now, Gerrit has reached the point of no return with his hunger. He is ridiculously upset and when I try to give him his food, he kicks it and 2 go flying. I decide to just drive. I get back on the highway and realize that I’ve probably been pulled over a good 30min with all the unnecessary drama. Gerrit finally starts eating and I think maybe we’ll finally get out of Michigan.
Jillian tells me in a very adorable sing song voice that we should have gone inside at McDonald’s and do I know why? I tell her nope, why? And she proceeds to tell me that Emma has to use the bathroom. WHAT?!? We’ve only been back on the road for 10min! She just went potty!!! I can feel my brain about to explode!!! I ask her if she can hold it for a while and she tells me yes. We make it about 30miles and Gerrit tells me he has to go stinkers too. Great… I find an exit about 10min later and we all get out again. For the millionth time. One more stop.
We haven’t even made it out of Michigan yet and I’ve already stopped how many times? I left my house at 8am and it’s 11:45 and I’m not even out of MI! I’m still about 16miles from the border. It should be 1:45-2hr trip max. My nerves are so shot from the road conditions after just witnessing somebody spin off the road, the stupid washer spray and my inability to see where the hell I’m driving, stopping every 20 miles and morons that are hired by McDonald’s. I miss my husband and just want to see him. I’m stressed by the fact that I have 4 kids to get there safely and soundly. I’m stressed and frustrated and I start crying. Yes, crying in the gas station. Not sobbing or anything but big fat tears are shooting from my eyes and I have no control over them. I feel really alone and isolated out in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by snow and ice.
The gas attendant is trying to talk to the kids but she doesn’t understand them when they answer her so her sweet gesture is now one more frustration in this nightmare of a trip. Dan calls in the middle of this and doesn’t understand why I’m so upset. I don’t have the energy to tell him and it just compounds my level of frustration. What I really needed was a glass of wine and to bawl my eyes out but there was still about 200 miles to drive and kids to watch over.
We get back in the car and somehow manage to not pull over again until we got to my friend’s house that we were going to stay with. Dan & Matt get there and suddenly all the stress and isolation I felt were gone. We ended up having a really low-key weekend but a great time after that.
Happily, the drive home was so great. The roads were great and the kids were awesome. Matt’s kids were fantastic both on the way down and the way back and mine managed to be good on the way home. I even got some pics
Here’s Emma & Kailen Easter morning about to do the egg hunt
Hunting for Easter eggs
Hunting some more. Trying to catch Emma holding still was really hard so thats why her face is blurred
Braeden, Jillian & Gerrit and you can see the top of Emma’s head
Braeden, Jillian, Emma & Gerrit
They watched 3 movies on the way home. Thanks so much to my friend Nicole that lent me their dual screen DVD player. She is so awesome for doing that. My brain actually would have exploded if not for that.
We did end up having a great time while we got to see Dan. He still had to work and was tired when he was with us but it was better than nothing. It gave me a chance to hang out with my friend and see their beautiful house too so that was a bonus.
Can’t wait til Dan comes home