| LifeTakes |

Noise Annoys

Yehudah was 99.9 percent sound asleep when I heard it. Oh, no

Thank You, Hashem, I'm thrilled to have turned into a bubby.

A real live bubby, imagine that.

After the shalom zachar and bris fanfare died down and life went back to normal, I spotted my chance to get my hands on the little cutie. I sweetly volunteered to watch him for a few hours while my daughter-in-law napped. I was entrusted with the precious bundle in his Doona, paci in his mouth, tucked snug as a bug in a rug in his blanket. The weather was lovely so I decided to take him for a walk.

Aah. Alone at last.

I’d been informed that it was time for Yehudah’s nap. It was peaceful and quiet outside, aside from some birds chirping delicately in the background. This should be a piece of cake.

Cake? Perhaps. But not the easy-peasy Duncan Hines mix you can throw together in three minutes flat. More like that complicated recipe with numerous steps and tricky techniques type of cake. Baby whimpered and I sped up. Baby fussed and I hummed a little tune. Baby squinted up at me with a decidedly unhappy look on his face and I smiled reassuringly. He furrowed his brow and spat out his paci and I patiently tucked it back in. Then he started wailing.

No, that wouldn’t do at all. Time to furrow my brow.

I took him out and soothed him, then carefully eased him back into the stroller. He fussed, I soothed, he spat the paci out, I tucked it back in. Finally, finally, he started to settle and I started to relax. Soon he would be asleep and I would return home, all nonchalant. I would be commended and given a Number One Bubby mug.

Yehudah was 99.9 percent sound asleep when I heard it.

Oh, no.

Not here. Not now.

I squinted, which is what I do when I want to hear better, though of course that doesn’t make sense. Yup, I’d heard right. It was the ice cream truck’s jingle and it sounded like it was two blocks away. I sped toward home faster, Mr. Frostee’s jingle following me like a shadow. Never had it sounded more annoying.

Couldn’t the little kids in the neighborhood be offered treats at another, more convenient time? Did they have to have their ice cream now, when new grandmas were attempting to put overtired babies to sleep? It was 12:30; why, they probably hadn’t even finished their lunches yet. They could wait while I got this little guy off to slumberland.

I practically raced toward home, the ice cream truck coming closer. I remembered this feeling of panic from years ago, when I attempted to get my babies to fall asleep in their strollers. I’d get some exercise and baby would get fresh air and a nap. Win, win.

But I remembered this sinking feeling of dread all too well. Right when I could practically smell victory, some little blue sedan with the roof down would come merrily down the street with “Don’t worry, be happy!” blaring on its radio.

Don’t worry? I’d think nastily. You’re telling me not to worry when you just woke up my cranky kid who desperately needed a nap? Be happy? Why? Because he would no doubt end up taking the dreaded 4:30 p.m. nap?

Jingling ice cream trucks, impatient drivers honking because the light had turned green and the driver in front of them was spacing out, noisy mowers, worker men with jackhammers, all those were my nemeses. Things to be feared. And now, as a bubby, they were coming back to haunt me.

The jingle tinkled on, and I turned around. A mom and her little boy had emerged from the public school parking lot and had flagged the ice cream truck driver down. Hopefully the boy would take his time deliberating between rainbow sprinkles and chocolate sprinkles. Yup, he looked like the indecisive type.

Legs pumping, palms sweating, I made one last dash — and I was safe at home. Ever so carefully, I eased the Doona up the front stairs and into a quiet guestroom. Then I positioned myself at the front window seat where I could see if any Amazon Prime or Fed Ex guys were walking up our stairs. No one would be ringing the doorbell this afternoon if I could prevent it.

I may not have a cape but I had morphed into SuperBubby, ready to guard and protect my little einekel. Number One Bubby, that was me — even without the mug to prove it.


(Originally featured in Family First, Issue 799)

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