Now I know what it means to be driven to drink.
Pour me a large gin and tonic, with a tequila shot to start and to follow.
Or I could switch to decaf.
No matter, my rage is now starting to subside, my nerves to calm and my sanity to return.
What drove me to my looming inebriation?
The day started out good. Better than good. It was one of those cold winter afternoons when the crisp air makes you feel alive. I had finished my deadline work as a reporter and caught up on a few pending tasks. I felt good and relaxed. My two youngest kids were at home playing with toy cars, and the housekeeper was ironing a mountain of clothes.
All was pleasant.
So I left the apartment and took a walk to pick up my eldest daughter from school. I got there with time to spare and chatted with a few of the other parents, and then walked home casually with my seven-year-old daughter. We chatted about her day and the World Cup. She was thrilled about Spain knocking out Germany after Germany had knocked out her Argentina and her mother’s England. Go Spain!
We got home, went up the elevator and inside. The housekeeper was pleasantly ironing the mountain of clothes and I went to see the two youngest.
That’s when it hit.
First it was the stench and then the sight of my littlest daughter on my bed covered head to toe in, well, feces. She’d filled her nappy and decided to take it out. It was everywhere.
I rushed her to the bathroom and along the way debris tumbled down to the floor and under my shoes. I washed her hands and set about scrubbing off the dried-on layer that caked her body. Only my nails would do the trick. I popped her in the bath and raced off to get the mop and a bucket of hot water and the strongest cleaning fluid I could find.
The housekeeper was calmly ironing.
The phone rang.
It was a friend and she asked how things were going.
“I’m taking deep breaths.”
“Oh, that bad,” she said. “Do you need anything?”
“Dettol, please. And a stiff drink.”