It happens to the best of us…it was my first time

We all do it. Walk into a room and forget what we went in there for. Leave the coffee cup on top of the car and drive away. Frantically search the entire house for the sunglasses that have been perched on your head the entire time. I do that stuff. All the time. I am getting better. In fact, in order to combat these mental failures I’ve created some pretty strict rules for myself. Like if I’m going into another room to get something I’ll say what I’m going in there for out loud, even if it makes me sound like a psycho. I don’t take my prescription sunglasses out of my purse ever. If I take them off in the house, they go in the case in the purse, no matter what. And the coffee goes in the cupholder, or I make two trips. Why, you ask, have I created these rules? Because I have a daughter. You see, I developed this theory that if I create rules and rituals to make me act more responsibly, I might actually become more responsible.

I had nightmares when I was pregnant. You know, the kind where the stroller rolls down a hill, or a striped shirted burglar snatched my baby from right out of my arms. I hadn’t even met her, and I already didn’t want to lose her. That’s the crazy. Plain and simple. I love my girl. So if there was a way I could resolve some of the minor forgetfulness I suffered from, then that left more room for me to concentrate on never letting her put her fingers in the electric socket, touch the stove, or lock my keys in the car with her in it. Except for that last one…

I hate when they say, “It happens to the best of us”. It’s not true. The best of us do not do this. They never, ever, EVER do this. That’s why they’re the best of us. You should know that I am not the best of us. Before Little G, I’d locked my keys in the car several times. Once with the car running, on my way to somewhere that was an hour and a half away, when my husband (the guy with the only other key to that car) who was car pooling in his bosses’ car had just arrived at work. Since I was pregnant with Little G, over two years ago, I’d made sure never to do it. Ever. I was the best of us. And then, just like that, I wasn’t anymore.

Of course I was rushing. I was late to my first event with my new job. I’d gotten caught up with my other two jobs, and lost track of time. I’d carefully packed my purse with everything I’d need and more for several hours in AC. I had Little G’s little suitcase all packed up with everything she’d need for 12 hours at my parents’ house. Little G was being completely uncooperative, as she tends to get when she’s excited. So I cut my purse search for my keys short,  leaving the front door open just in case the keys weren’t actually in there. I load up the front seat of the car, keeping Little G next to the car door so I can stop her from running into the street-should she be so inclined. Of course as she’s standing there she’s messing with the buttons, but it’s not a big deal, because my hoopdie’s power locks don’t work on the passenger’s side. Every now and then that side’s switch will lock the passenger’s side door, but in my car, in order to power lock the door it has to be done from the driver’s side.

So I get Little G into her car seat, and go into my purse for my keys. There’s so much stuff in there. All the stuff I that doesn’t start my car. In one of those split second moments of inner conflict I decide to close the car door because I’m only going to be a second. I run into the house only to discover that the kitchen table is not holding my keys. They must be in my purse. Okay, run back to the car, grab the handle, pull- oops. Whatever, I go around to the driver’s side, grab the handle, pull–oh shit…oh no. Oh my God Grace is in the car. Oh shit.  Oh shit Oh shit.

My phone is in the purse. Grace is smiling. So I run back into the house for the land line, and…it’s dead. WTF! What do I do. I run back out to the car, Grace is excited to see me. I check my neighbors houses. No one is home. I try to flag a car down off the street. No good.

I go back in the house pop open my laptop and google “how to break-in to a car”. Nothing immediately helpful. I run into the closet and find a wire hangar. I try the passenger’s side door again, you know, in case I’m hallucinating, but I’m not. I pull harder, in case I’m the Hulk, but I’m not. I climb up on top of the car to try the sunroof, but I remember that Grace is in the car and shattered glass isn’t a good idea. I try the hatchback. I try the hatchback harder, in case I finally got my Hulk strength. No dice.

I run back in the house, pull up Facebook and post on my bestie’s (who is meeting me at my house in 15 minutes) wall, “I locked my keys in the car with Little G in it, come to my house please”. I run back out and spend the next five minutes trying to get Little G to undo her own safety restraints, you know, cause she IS a genius, except not that much of a genius. All she’s doing is touching her finger to mine through the window and smiling. I run back inside, and my brother, 200 miles away, has posted asking me if he should call someone. I reply, “Call Dad”. Okay, calvary is on the way. I look down and notice that my black pants now have a tear in the crotch. I don’t care.

Back outside I try to use the hanger to fit in between the seal in the car door. It’s not working, and I’m ripping the seal. Shit. I smile at Little G, who smiling broadly. My bestie arrives first. That’s when the tears start. It’s the relief. That, it’s going to be okay feeling that lets me cry. She gives me her phone. I call my Dad’s house. No answer- good that means he’s on his way. I call the police and they tell me their sending a car right away. I call my boss and tell her what’s going on and that I’m going to be late. I run inside and change my pants. When I get back my Dad is there…more tears. He’s got his own hangar–he’s always prepared. The police get there a minute later. He pries my door open with a wedge and uses a slim jim type thingie to push the power lock open, and voila! “You’re my hero!” I tell the policeman, as I reach in for my cherub who says, “You did it, you saved me!”

That’s my girl. She thought it was an adventure. It was.

I told the story a dozen times afterwards. To the lady at the bank. To the guy at the Quik Chek. To the man at the black jack table. They all said the same thing, “It happens to the best of us”. No. It doesn’t, but that’s okay. It happened to me. Luckily that was two days ago, and I’m 2 days into being the best of us. Cause Lord knows that shit will never happen to me again.


Has it happened to you? What’s your worst locked in/out story?

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