Everyone was finally loaded in the van. Cooler with lunches for everyone (including Daddy who would meet us later), check. Manual breast pump with bottle (in case I had to feed Jack on the go), check. Sunscreen (in case it's sunny), jackets (in case it's not), cell phone, camera, and partridge in a pear tree, check.
It was 9:30. Everyone had gotten dressed, gone potty, and Maddie even let me brush her hair (miracle of miracles). We'd make it to the doctor on time for Jack's two month check-up, feed him, and even if they were running behind (because they always are) we'd still arrive at the pumpkin farm on time for Parker's preschool field trip. Whew! I allowed myself to exhale.
My zen moment was interrupted by a tiny voice from the backseat: "Mommy, you said [insert bad word]."
My eyes shot open wide. "What?!"
Parker: Mommy, you said [bad word].
Me: [genuinely confused] When!?
Parker: As we were leaving the house. You said it. You said [bad wo-]
Me: Okay! Okay. I really don't remember saying that, but if you say so, I probably did. Mommy is so sorry. I should never say words like that. I was very rushed, but that doesn't make it okay--
Maddie: (chiming in) Noooo. We don't say [bad word].
Me: [getting flustered] Okay! Okay guys. You're right. We don't say that. I'm very sorry.
Visions of Parker relaying the story to his innocent preschool playmates while they jumped from bales of hay as judgmental teachers and parents looked on filled my brain. Time for damage control.
Me: Parker, I know Mommy shouldn't have said that bad word, and I'm very, very sorry I said it [understatement]. I need you not to repeat it anymore, okay? Don't tell your friends--
You see, Parker has found the bad-word tattle-tale loophole, and he loves it. I can't tell you how many times he has come home from school with a story about so-and-so who said "fart" or "poop" or some other forbidden word. He delights in relaying the offense, as it gives him the opportunity to use the word himself.
Me: If you need to tell someone, tell Daddy. Just don't repeat the word I said. Just say, 'Mommy said a bad word,' and I can tell him what it was, okay?
Parker: [grudgingly] Okay.