Life Happens: Fireworks Fail

If I had a filing cabinet for moments, I’d file this under: FAIL! Fireworks_Fail

Let me take you back to July. I want to take you specifically to July 4th. It was a beautiful day and the (ex)man and I had been planning to spend a little time with the frog princess enjoying those all-American traditions on Independence Day. BBQ, family, fireworks and oh yeah, post traumatic stress disorder!

I went over to my girlfriend’s house for some BBQ. She has twins 6 months apart from the girl so, it’s always a good play date moment. After which, we packed up the fruit of our loins to what was sure to be the bestest 4th of July they had ever had!

SparklersInstead of heading downtown, we decided to head to a neighborhood on the east side of town which we had strategically planned would be more accessible to us after calculating crowd size, the approximate wind speed, time of sunset, rotation of the earth around the sun, snack requirements, water level intake needed and the exact amount of ice cubes it would take us to maintain cool water levels in our water bottles. We are detailed like that. This bunch of four professionals, critical thinkers and overall smart folk.

We found a spot around the lake that would accommodate the size of the blanket we had brought along with our toddler accoutrements. Then…we waited. While we waited we saw people around us with children. Some with pets. But the majority of them looked over to us and chatted amongst themselves. Of course they did! Have you seen how adorable our kids are?! They would be crazy not to look at us! This is what we were thinking. What fools we were.

Twins ReadingKissing Mami

I saw the barge across the small man-made lake and remembered how close we were to the old neighborhood. How cool it was because we used to just be able to see the fireworks from our backyard. And still, no warning lights went off in my head.

As the barge moved to the middle of the lake we got excited and sat the kids on our laps. Only then did we look at one another and whisper in a questioning form “do you think it will be too loud for them?”. By the time the additional algorithms were worked out in our collective heads about how even a mile down we could HEAR the fireworks as well as see them. How we were not even 100 yards from the center of the lake and perhaps, how loud it would become. It was too late.

Instantaneously we realized that perhaps those people were not looking at us marveling over the intelligence and beauty of our tiny brood. That they were sitting there either laughing at us or with their cell phones on speed dial to the local DCF office to report the child abuse that surely took place a nanosecond after that first explosion burst in the air.

Have you seen scared children? Have you felt them? Do you know how quickly they can cling to every thread of your being for sweet, dear life? How their eyes go wide with shock at the sight of what surely is some sort of alien invasion taking place in the middle of this fine day. These canons firing cannot be for friendly entertainment! Oh no, we must be under attack!

With THREE kids clinging to us for dear life and speaking in incoherent urges to get them out of there we packed up our cozy camp in…5 popping of fireworks in the air. I have no idea how we trekked from the sides of the lake up to the street and away from the fireworks. What I do know is that everyone around us was staring. It was almost as if the show before them was way better than the show of color and shapes above them.

The word embarrassing doesn’t even begin to cover what we felt as we scurried down the street while people watched us along the way. But more than that, we were horrified at ourselves for our lack of common sense. WHO in their right minds would take a child so close to fireworks? Who?! Tell me! We beat ourselves up as we walked. While pointing the finger at one another. Laughing at times because, what else are you going to do? Hoping that no one in the crowd recognized us so that we could remain the anonymous bad parents who were not even awake when they came up with the bright idea of sitting their naïve children in front of the lake only to watch them suffer the consequences of those bright ideas.

I still can’t believe we did that! Oh. Em. Gee. I remember my girlfriend saying: they thought it was Vietnam or something. Seriously, the kids were simultaneously in shock and despair. One of them wasn’t even talking. She was just looking up at us and looking up at the fading sparkles in the sky with one question in her eyes: why?!

We thought the same thing, folks. And the truth is, we don’t have an answer. We just wanted our kids to enjoy a nice day out as we celebrated our country. Instead, we have the beginning of the therapy bill.

More horrifying than this story? When we took the frog princess to Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, the recollection of guilt was non-existent as we parked the stroller in front of Cinderella’s castle waiting for, guess? FIREWORKS! Yes, we had to make a mad dash exit out of there too. Do you know how difficult it is to make a mad dash through sitting throngs of people awaiting the Magic? Let me tell you, you don’t wanna know!

In other news: I’ve taught the frog princess how to say regression therapy in the hopes to expedite the process when she does begin her sessions. Dear therapist, you’re welcome!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. All embarrassing moments are, sadly, my own. That being said, I really want to urge you to visit The Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education (LIFE). It is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping consumers make smart insurance decisions to safeguard their families’ financial futures. While it is not something that we ever want to discuss, one of the ways in which I feel we love those around us is by having things in order should “life happen” and something irreversible takes place. Having had to deal with the paperwork, planning and sorting after mami’s passing, I know all too well the importance of having your affairs in order.

I hope that this story made you laugh a little and I also hope that you stop by Life Happens and read up on how you can help bring a little peace to your family.

Have you had an embarrassing moment (feel free to top mine so that I can feel better)?

In honor of Life Insurance Awareness Month, the nonprofit LIFE Foundation is giving away great prizes for the best Life Happens moments. You can enter the contest any time before Friday, October 7th. Make sure to encourage your friends and family to vote for your story as the Life Happens moments with the most votes will win (voting ends Friday, October 14th). First place will receive an Apple iPad® , second place will receive a $350 Apple gift card and third place will receive a $150 Amazon gift card.

Life Happens. And while you can’t control the future, you can take steps to protect the good things in life. Take a look around The LIFE Foundation website and learn more about how life insurance can help safeguard a secure financial future for those you love.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of The LIFE Foundation. The opinions and text are all mine. Official Contest Rules