Do you ever have a parenting moment that feels like it’s something out of a movie, or perhaps even a badly-produced community play? That was me last night.
I had *just* gotten Lily into the tub when I heard a blood-curling scream – not the sound any parent wants to hear from her little bathing beauty. But from the next room where I was putting away some laundry, I knew exactly why my five-year-old was upset; the power had gone out.
As an adult, a half-hour power outage is a minor inconvenience. But as a kid, a power outage is a major adventure! Oh, the highs and lows of experiencing new things as a little child; Lily started out feeling scared in the darkened bathroom (fair enough). Her fear soon turned to sheer delight when I lit tea lights and put them all around the bathtub – telling her she could have a “romantic candlelit bath” (she then latched on to the word ‘romantic’ and kept using it, which quickly got a bit creepy).
After about three minutes had passed, my eight-year-old daughter, Elissa, was asking how long it would last. She seemed extremely concerned that the power might stay off all night. I reassured her that any problems on the energy grid were typically rectified quite quickly, but apparently my word wasn’t enough. Complaining that she was getting cold, she disappeared and came back moments later dressed in her FULL snowsuit – hat included. No overreactions there!
With my husband still at work, I had to take action in case the power outage did continue indefinitely. First things first, I fumbled through my nightstand drawer for my emergency flashlight. At this point, I was feeling pretty pleased that I had candles and a flashlight stashed in a handy location for an emergency situation just like this one.
Now, I should probably mention that the ’emergency flashlight’ is also sometimes the ‘play-time flashlight’, like when the kids are having a camp-out in the living room, or playing haunted house. For reasons you can probably guess, I have since decided that this multi-functional role is not ideal; the batteries in the flashlight were totally dead.
Naturally, the next move out of my Supermom playbook was to fumble my way downstairs to steal the batteries from the TV and DVD remote controls, then transfer them into the aforementioned flashlight. If you’ve ever attempted to do this in the pitch black – using only the light emitted from your Blackberry screen – let me tell you that it’s not a seamless process. (Note to self: Buy AA batteries.)
Just as my heroic efforts with the flashlight came to fruition, the lights came back on; the girls shrieked in excitement. For them, it had been a dramatic, suspense-filled 30 minutes. For me, it was a good reminder to upgrade to Duracell and to look into those performance classes for the kids – because I certainly have a couple of drama queens on my hands.