For those who think I have it all together

Inspired by Judith Viorst’s Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.


Even grownups can have terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days.

My boss came into my office. “I am going to throw a curve ball at you,” he said, shutting the door.

Just like that, I could tell that it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

“Kay has turned in her notice.”

Kay is one of my peers. This announcement meant there was a better than average chance a portion of her work would find its way to me, at least temporarily, while the position was refilled. I looked at my mug. “I am going to have to start spiking my coffee,” I replied while I considered moving to Australia.

My boss laughed but didn’t disagree.

Yep, I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

Five o’clock rolled around, ending an office day filled with sympathetic looks and panicked responses (many of which were mine). I raced out the door. My husband, Lamont, was out-of-town the rest of the week (a trip I hadn’t known about until the afternoon before), therefore it fell on me to pick up our children from their various locations. All I had to do was get there on time.

I hit traffic.

Much later than I’d planned, I waited for Kiddo to pull his shoes on and collect his book bag. He, however, was more interested in showing me bits of small paper. “I’ve made a card,” he advised. “For the Leprechaun. Do you think he will come tonight?”

I silenced my inner groan along with several other choice words I won’t print here. The next day was St. Patrick’s Day, and I had nothing prepared. No Leprechaun traps. No pots ready to be filled with gold. Nothing. When exactly had leprechauns coming to your house on St Patty’s Day become a thing anyway?

I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

When we got to the house, Kiddo made a bee-line to the television, ready to consume his daily allowance of cartoons. Her Royal Highness, our dog, made an equally determined path to the front door, ready to take care of her own daily requirements. I looked to Kiddo. I looked to Her Royal Highness. Taking her outside would give me an opportunity to send a message to my mom regarding a certain Leprechaun. “I’ll be right back,” I called. The cartoon’s theme song was already playing as I closed the door.

Mom replied back within short order, not for me to worry, however, Her Royal Highness had not yet done what we’d come out to let her do. Just then a cat appeared, and not just any cat – it was the cat. The cat that is either the bravest or stupidest animal I’ve ever seen. Whatever the reason, this cat not only is not afraid of dogs, it actively seeks them out. Spotting Her Royal Highness, it immediately crossed the road, causing a car to come full stop and angry looks shot my way.

Her Royal Highness passed her cat test before we brought her home, but still, I don’t like to tempt fate, nor do I wish to be responsible for an injury of someone else’s pet. Seeing no other choice, I led Her Royal Highness away. The cat followed. Only when we rounded a corner did the cat give up its pursuit. If I wasn’t an animal lover who doesn’t condone this line of thinking, I might hope you step on a tack, cat.

It was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

That’s what it was because when we returned inside, the house was empty. Guess whose kid decided, in those short few minutes, that he missed me more than he wanted to watch his cartoons and had run off in the opposite direction with his brother while Her Royal Highness was being chased by a cat around the corner?

If what I’d felt during the work day was panic, the myriad of swirling emotions I experienced in that moment has yet to be named. I wondered if invisible fencing for children is allowed in Australia.

I am having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day, I texted my mom (or roughly something like that). I didn’t look at my phone to see if she answered.

While I was scolding/hugging my children for giving me a fright, Mom showed up on my front porch with a frozen mix of Korean noodles in hand. It was a wonderful gesture, but. . . they proved to be utterly inedible. Even Her Royal Highness turned it down.

Kiddo, wanting to show off for his Nana, took twice as long to do his homework than he usually does and LT, well LT was his normal self, but if I allowed LT access to the phone, he probably would have called Australia.

It was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

Lamont didn’t promptly return my texts, and I hate that.

Exhausted after the kids went to bed, I couldn’t motivate myself to work on my WIP and I hate a lost opportunity.

When I finally did hear from Lamont it was clear he’d been having fun while I was not. I still hadn’t figured out what to do about the Leprechaun outside of mom’s vague assurances that all would be well and calling into work sick the next day wasn’t an option.

It had been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

My mom says some days are like that, even for people who might seem to have it all together.

I guess it’s a good thing for me then, that my mom lives nearby and not in Australia.

Love you, Mom, and thanks.

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27 thoughts on “For those who think I have it all together

  1. Ugh! I hate days like that. So happy for you to have your mom nearby to lend a hand. I hope work doesn’t get too crazy for you, and that Lamont gets back soon! Oh, and that the leprechauns get caught, the cheeky little green bastards!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Don’t those days just suck like the biggest vacuum cleaner ever invented?! Hope they disappear and are covered by really good days – but workload increases don’t ever seem to disappear. Best of luck.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Whew! I’m exhausted just reading about your terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. But isn’t that what life is all about? Just think of the alternative. At my age, any day above ground is a treat. I actually miss those good old days with all that terribleness, horribleness, no goodness, and very badness. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Leprechauns come into your house on St Pat’s Day? I’ve never heard of this. I set no traps, encountered no oddities during the day. Did they show up here & I missed them? Or were they wise enough to know to not set foot inside the house knowing I’d bean them with my broomstick if I saw one? The things I learn here…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I guess we appreciate all the more the lovely, beautiful, all-good, fantabulous days when we have the terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad days!

    I agree about the whole leprechaun thing. I did not set traps when I was a kid. Same thing with Elf on a Shelf. Ugh! As if we didn’t have enough on our plates!!

    Moms are precious like that, and I’m sure she felt good knowing that you needed her and that she helped you through!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • So very true!

      We have an elf that visits us as well, but he is the laziest of all Santa’s helpers and rarely moves from his spot from the time he arrives until the day he magically is whisked back away. I tell my kids it is because they are so naturally good Santa doesn’t have to send his very best to keep an eye on them.

      I am forever grateful that my mom lives so close.

      Like

  6. I have my share of terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days. Perhaps too many. Is it awful of me to say this makes me feel better? I’d feel rude saying that but you’re the one who posted it. Just saying. 😉 And you did so for those of us who think you do have it all together (AND HOW DOES SHE DO IT?! AAH!) or something. Hugs and non-frozen noodles to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. It wasn’t until I looked at the cover again after reading the post, I realised who it was on the cover! VERY VERY clever. I literally hate days like this, horrible, horrendous, awful days. Thank goodness for your mum though, and in time for a UK mothers day. Love my mum too ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad you approve! It was one of those days that you have to laugh (after the fact) or else you might cry. I’d forgotten it was your mother’s day until after this was already posted so that was pure coincidence, but I’m always grateful for my mom.

      Like

  8. If you were in Australia, I bet you would have had a g’day, mate!

    Yeah. I went there.

    Where I never went, when my kids were little, was to a place where leprechauns were a “thing.” Thankfully! It was hard enough figuring out where to hide all the Easter eggs every year.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! Having visited and absolutely loved Australia, I suspect I would have too.

      I am convinced that the teachers at Kiddo’s school are intentionally filling their heads with this sort of thing to get back at parents who send their kids to school with sugary snacks (guilty). When I was little, you really didn’t want to catch a leprechaun unless you were really, really sure he couldn’t get away. I believe there was an entire movie called Leprechaun on the subject.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. This is awesome, Allie, I know this book like the back of my hand, my son’s name is Alexander (Xander) and we read that book many, many, many times (wore out several copies). Thanks for sharing this at my blog party, now I’m going to do the same. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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