Junk in My Trunk

I nearly locked my keys in my car yesterday. It couldn't have been a better situation in which to lock your keys in your car. I was in the driveway, at home, and the four-and-a-half year old was in the car, totally capable of unlocking it should this have happened.

There was a time when this wasn't always the case.

There are some incidents which stick out in your memory that you'd rather block. Maybe it was a near-death experience, or maybe one not so serious, but still something you'd rather not imagine an alternate ending to. Something that might seem funny in the retelling, but you still wouldn't want to relive it.

I present to you, the Locked Car Incident.

Up until the birth of our second child Squishy (As in the line from Finding Nemo: "I shall call him 'Squishy,' and he shall be mine, and he shall be my Squishy.") I worked full time and the four-and-a-half year old (henceforth, Captain Picklepants, which is what he likes to call himself sometimes, maybe I'll shorten that to C.P.--I'll get carpal tunnel if I have to type that a lot) was in day care.

So I'm in the glorious 8th month of pregnancy (read: swollen everywhere, back pain, leg pain, lack of sleep, there's no glow at this point, it's really just a slow burn) and C.P. and I get home one night. I pull into the driveway, turn off the ignition, and just sit there and collect myself for a moment, exhausted. The boy is sound asleep in the back; at that time I had a 25 minute ride home after picking him up. I put my keys in my bag, leave my bag on the seat, open the door, out of habit, depress the auto-lock button, and get out and close the door.

"Noooooooooooooo....the keeeeeeyyyyyyyysssss are in the caaaaaaaarrrrrr!!!!!!!!" SLAM!


Did I seriously just lock my keys in the car, with my three-year-old inside, who is safely and securely buckled into his car seat, sound asleep?

Yes I Did.

I looked at my watch, John won't be home for another half hour. The panic started rising in my throat, I pushed it back down. I went around to C.P.'s window and started banging on it and calling his name to wake him up. Of course, he woke up, startled and crying. This is getting so much better by the minute.

For the next 15 minutes, I tried, unsuccessfully, to get him to unlock the door. Bless his little heart, he tried so hard, so earnestly, but since we are parents who support carseat laws (no such thing when my siblings and I were little--my parents basically threw all eight of us in the car, wherever we'd fit is where we'd sit, preferably out of reach of my father's swatting arm which came out of nowhere if there was misbehaving going on, which there always was, but I digress), as I said, since we support carseat laws, the little dude was going nowhere without assistance. His arm was just a hair too short to reach the car lock and handle. Under normal circumstances, this is a good thing. Not so much at the moment.

All this time, I'm singing to him, talking, jumping around being goofy, trying so desperately to keep him in good spirits. And did I mention it was cold? November cold. No snow yet, but there may as well have been. Breath was seen. Hands were wrung (both from cold and present situation).

It was at that moment I realized I'd popped the trunk before I'd shut the car door. I had my weekly necessaries from Target in the trunk, and had popped it to unload after getting in the house. No problem! I thought. I'll just push down the little center thing they install in the middle of the back seat for all those times you need to put skis in a Honda Accord, and reach over and unbuckle him from his carseat, and he can get up and unlock the door. Piece of cake, right?

Piece of cake if you're not eight months pregnant.

Ten minutes later, my husband comes home, and this is what he sees: the trunk of the Honda wide open, with what he realizes is his wife's 8-month pregnant ass (if my ass is the size of Rhode Island after two pregnancies, during pregnancy itself it was more like Utah, quite square and riddled with mountains and canyons, but I digress) sticking out of it, as I am fully ensconced in the trunk of my foreign car, with my left arm stuck in the center console opening of the back seat, very near tears because I don't know what to do.

Now picture this: my husband, who has all the compassion of Mother Teresa but is wickedly sarcastic and cannot resist, for example, laughing at someone when they slip and fall, is not totally sure what the consequences will be if he lets out his rising guffaws. Oh hell, even if she leaves me, he thinks, it will be worth it. So he stands there, with his hands on his knees, doubled over laughing. Captain Picklepants thinks this is even funnier, and he is pointing at his Daddy, laughing himself.

The only person not laughing is me, because I'm busy trying to uncramp my arm enough to shoehorn my way out of the trunk, without using bacon grease to lube up my swollen belly. As my beloved wipes tears of laughter from his eyes, I try to muster all the dignity I can while climbing out of the trunk of my car, leave him to get Captain Picklepants out, and I go in the house to lie down.

I have still, to this day, never needed a beer more than I did at that moment, and I couldn't have one.

As it turns out, I did not leave my husband for laughing at me in my time of need, though for a moment I probably wanted to. And I now find the whole thing somewhat amusing. Assuming, of course, it doesn't happen someday with Squishy.

At least if it does, I'll be ready. Rhode Island is a whole lot easier to fit in a trunk than Utah.

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