It was meant to be a fun family outing. But when her kids kept acting up, Beck Vass decided to cancel their much-anticipated plans.
As always, the roller-coaster of parenthood rolls on, up and down, topsy turvy and back around.
The kids (and us as parents) seem to go through phases and things move from smooth to rough so quickly you can't even guess the cause.
Case in point, we planned to take our kids to Disney on Ice in Hamilton a few weekends back.
My husband had suggested it seeing it had been fun last time.
But things turned a corner on the Tuesday beforehand when the kids, 6 and 4, started fighting more and acting up.
The Wednesday became even worse. By Thursday I'd snapped.
I messaged my husband saying: "We are NOT going to Disney on Ice."
My frazzled mind had leapt forward to the end of the weekend where I'd be busting my metaphorical balls getting everything ready for the kids' enjoyment while they were being ungrateful little punks who had made the entire event a stress.
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They're kids, that's their job, I know. But there is only so much one can take.
A friend messaged me while I was in a dark place.
"Do you want to use your massage voucher this weekend?"
She was referring to a voucher I'd had for nearly a year but hadn't made time for; a gift from a friend when I was pregnant with our now 10-month-old.
This particular friend and I have talked about escaping for a massage for the six years we have known each other.
When the kids were naughty next, about four minutes later, I dropped the bombshell: "We're not going to Disney on Ice this weekend. I am going out instead."
Our son cried. I felt bad but not bad enough. They had taken it too far and I wanted them to know it.
I have had a handful of massages in my life. The last one was many, many years ago.
We rang and booked and at about 5pm (right when I would have been watching Elsa and Minnie Mouse) I left my husband with the two ratbags and the baby.
See ya later!
I messaged the friend who bought me the voucher to thank her and tell her I was about to use it. And I filled her in on the last few days.
She replied: "Good. This makes me feel better. We have come to Napier and my kids are being dicks too. Why can't we take them anywhere without them being dicks?"
You just can't.
The massage with my friend turned into a couple's massage but we didn't care, we were just happy to be there.
Afterwards, we went to an awesome new Vietnamese café and ate delicious food that was hearty, wholesome, enjoyed uninterrupted and we didn't have to clean it up.
When we got home, our kids were asleep in bed and there was no one to shove any of our efforts back in our faces or make us question our sanity.
On the Sunday, my kids were even more terrible and I sat there, so very smug, smiling to myself that I'd made the right decision.
I'm almost looking forward to the next event we don't go to.