Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Voting...with twin 2yos

Disclaimer: There is no mention of political parties or those running in the 2014-2015 election.

Today is voting day. Of course, I planned to take advantage of my right to vote. The only problem was I had the twins with me.

I checked the weather first. RAIN. Oh, joy! But thankfully, it had settled to light drizzle when I reached the church--my voting location. I sat in the parking lot for a minute or so, preparing myself for the ordeal. I'll strap both girls in the stroller. No problem, right?

WRONG. But I'll get there.

I wheeled them over to the front door. The first thing I saw were stairs. I suppressed a groan. I was NOT in the mood to carry them down the stairs into the basement. But instead I faced a blessing--a sign pointing down the steep ramp, stating, "Wheelchair Entrance." I was so relieved I actually smiled, as I pushed them briskly down the ramp. I reached an old, metal door, propped open with a stick.

Now, I'm actually a pro now at pushing the double-long stroller through a single door. I have these long, lanky arms that can stretch over the stroller, push the door open, hold it open long enough for my stroller to fit through. Easy peasy. After all, I am Elastigirl (haha. I wish.).

Thankfully, this was no different. But it was strange. I was in a dim-lit hallway. Stairs to my left (Haha. No, thank you.), and a hallway to my right. I followed the hallway around until it ended in a large room. The section of the room where I entered had no lights on, but I could see lights at the other end. I passed children's toys shoved against the wall. Ending up at the voting stations, I searched for the sign-in station, which was (of course) on the other end, near the original stairs.

After I wheeled past the judges and random tables set up, I reached the end of the line--which contained only two people. I breathed a sigh of relief, because there weren't many people to distract or any waiting time. "This is gonna be easy," I thought.

Ha. Ha. Ha. Yeeeeah, no. No, it wasn't.

I parked the twins across from my voting station and got straight to work. I glanced up after a few seconds, just to check on them. That's when I saw her. Ella.

She had slithered her short legs out of the straps and crawled out of the stroller. She stood next to the stroller, staring at me and waiting for me to react. As soon as I opened my mouth, she ducked her head and started hopping/skipping around. I coaxed her over to me and sat her on a chair right next to my voting station (why was there a chair there? no idea). I told her to stay and returned to my voting. I scanned names quickly and pressed buttons. I looked up again. She was gone. I scanned the room. No sign of her.

Now, she's the one who actually returns when I call her name...well, usually. The past two weeks, she's been testing me. But I convinced myself it would work. I refused to give into my fear, and I had no idea if I was actually allowed to leave my voting station. "Ella. Come. Here. Now," I ordered. When I started counting, I caught sight of her. She was greeting the voter at the end of the stations. I sucked in my breath. My cheeks flared red. I mouthed my apology, but the voter simply ignored me and smiled at Ella, gesturing to me. She came hopping right away, the voter chuckling behind her. I scooped her up, planting her on my hip, while I finished voting.

Then I put her back in the stroller--not wasting time to strap her in--and hustled to the dark corner of the room where I had emerged. But before I could escape, the gentleman at the sign-in table called after me, "Have a good day."

I didn't answer, but I did turn around and give him a wave.

Sigh. That could've gone better. But then again, it could've been worse.

I'm hoping next year my girls will be in daycare/preschool, and I can have an uneventful voting experience. Any others out there have an eventful experience? I'd love to hear from you. :)

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