Sometimes the littlest of things turns into a tangled cobweb of thoughts in your head and crowd you. You keep going back to those thoughts throughout the day. You build up a misunderstanding in your head and you wonder if indeed it can be set straight.
I went to Costco – the mammoth store with the always full – even as soon as the door opens – parking lot, to buy a whole bunch of items. I have been trying to go there every day but it just wasn’t happening. This morning, I decided to leave at 9.50 am so I could be there soon after the store opens. Of late, I have been trying to give KB his lunch at 10.45 to 11.00 am. It takes me at least 45 min to give him his lunch. When it was 9.45am and time to leave, I was too nervous that baby girl would wake up at 10.30am (3 hours after her morning feed) and start crying. My mother told me she would be fine and that she had just started napping and that I should go. I was too nervous to have no time for slack in case I got delayed – so I fed her at 10.00 am and figured if I got back by 11.30am, I could give KB his lunch and then nurse baby girl by 12.15 or so.
I made good timing, drove to the store in 10 min (no traffic) and found a spot quickly on one side of the lot. The lot was full but not over flowing like it always is. I got out of the car and quickly looked for a cart and walked over to the cart lot and pulled one out and put KB in it and rushed to the store. I had to return some item and then begin shopping.
In the rush I did not make a mental note of where I had parked the car. All I remembered was that it was close to the cart lane in one of the lots.
I finished shopping and was out of the store at 11.30am. I still had an hour and half before baby girl was due for her next feed. She sometimes wants to nurse in two hours but since she had fed nearly every two hours in the morning since 5.30am, I figured she would be fine. I would reach home by 11.45am (already late for KB’s meal time) and give him his meal and then nurse baby girl.
I walked towards where I thought the car would be, but I could not find it. It was a maze of cars and SUV’s and pick up trucks – either being parked or being pulled out of the lot. So many silver cars, I could not find ours. I walked around that side of the lot, around and around the five or so lanes back and forth pushing the cart full of stuff and KB, while feeding KB his cheese snack (thank heavens I had that with me) and I still could not find it. I called B couple of times to vent my frustration and worry. Did it get stolen? What happened to it? I remembered coming straight and turning into the lot on the left side. I was getting frantic. KB had to be given his lunch. Baby girl would wake up for her feed. And the car was not in sight! KB was being patient and in fact sounded a little excited when he said “Where’s the car?!” repeating after me.
I then asked a mother who had just put her son in his car seat and was about to leave, if she could help me out. I gave her the license no and asked her if she could just drive around the lot for a minute and see if I had missed seeing it. I felt blinded. How could I miss the car?! She was very nice about it and told me she would look for it. She went through the next lane and came back to where I was and waved – no, not there. I told her “You’re probably getting delayed, you go ahead, thank you”. I was outside on her passenger side but her window was open and I assumed she heard me. I was still walking around looking for my car and this time I located a store clerk and decided to walk up to him for help. I suddenly thought I would go to the opposite parking lot even though I was so sure in my head that I had not parked there. There it was, instantly spotted – our silver car that beeped to the remote. And suddenly it came back – yes, I had indeed parked there. It was next to the cart lane – except on this side, not the side I had walked in for the last 15 min or more.
I went around the whole lot once trying to spot that lady – I had only briefly glanced at her, did not notice her license plate no. I figured she must have left. And suddenly as I came out of the lot, I wondered – did she really hear me tell her she could leave and that I would manage? I didn’t want her to think I just sped off as soon as I found my car without even telling her. I looked around, I could not find her and I had already told her to leave. But all afternoon, this nagging doubt has been there in my head. I get into these sticky situations in my own head. Trivial as they may be. It feels like a kink that needs to be released. No way out. I have to let go of that thought. Here was a kind woman who helped me out by offering to look for my car. I did thank her and told her to go ahead. She may not have heard me. But I still feel bad because, in my frantic state, I didn’t make sure* that she heard me. I was afraid that baby girl would have woken up and give my mother a hard time. I was worried that it was already late for KB’s lunch. In all that, I just quickly told her to leave but I did not make sure that she heard me. If I had been in her place and wandered around the lot looking for the car, I would be upset if the other person just left without letting me know that they had found it. Yet I did the same. How can I resolve this?
I get into these imagined sticky situations every now and then. Now this woman may not even care – she may have assumed I found the car and left – which is quite likely. And she might have also heard me tell her to leave. Yet I worry about this. I sometimes get stressed just thinking that I may have offended someone that that is the reason they have not written to me or called me. And it will just turn out that they were just busy or preoccupied. Does this happen to others as well? Hope so!