This weekend, we traveled down to the little town of Thibodeaux, LA. The landscape between Baton Rouge and Thibodeaux looks exactly like what you saw in last season’s True Detective (if you watched it). Sugar cane fields and old plantations, with a bayou running alongside the winding highway. It’s so beautiful, in that strange Louisiana way.
We went so I could see my friend Laure, of Finding Fresh. We stuck our husbands in front of a football game and watched our boys run around like wild Indians while Pepper crawled around and looked cute. All was well — my kids didn’t break anything that I am aware of, and no one said anything wildly inappropriate. This should have been my first clue. As we packed up to head out to dinner, I thought to myself how happy I was that we could visit someone’s home and be a totally normal, non-destructive, polite family of five.
Dinner was wonderful. The restaurant was thankfully almost empty except for the nine of us, and for whatever reason they decided to seat our party right in front, directly next to the hostess stand. Aside from Pepper throwing an absurd amount of food on the floor, we almost got through dinner without incident.
And then it happened.
The boys started getting a little stir-crazy. Asher was burping repeatedly and Maverick must have been laughing with too much food in his mouth and he started choking. I sat there staring at him, trying to determine if this was a real choking incident or if he was just being dramatic. Since I wasn’t taking action, Robbie came from behind me and started pounding him on the back. This is when I realized, hello, my child is actually choking. But he was definitely getting some air because he was able to cough and eventually puke it up. I then went to the weird place moms go when they have to deal with something they don’t want to deal with, and I held out my hand so he could cough masticated chicken nuggets into it.
He coughed with such force that it caused a nosebleed, which I wiped at with my other hand. By the time it was over, his shirt was covered in blood and ketchup and the entire place was silent. Laure and her family huddled on the other side of the table, staring. Later on, she commented on how calm Robbie and I were, but I don’t think it’s calmness. I think it’s desensitization.
When the bar gets set to a certain height, it changes things a little. When Asher fell in glass last year, I was beyond traumatized, so anything that is less serious than that (you can read about it here, or maybe NOT) just doesn’t faze us apparently. But wow … dinner with the Hobbs is kind of exhausting. And dangerous, apparently.