Today I was momentously stupid.
I lost a musical instrument. The boy’s musical instrument. That’s on hire from a small specialist music shop in town.
I took it into said shop to swap it for a slightly different model at the music teachers request. Then picked up my shoes from the cobblers, tried to buy a take away milkshake from the shop that used to do milkshakes and found out it doesn’t any more, looked at some buttons in a bead shop (mmm, habedashery), waited at the bus stop, got the bus, got home and realised I only had my 2 large bags of groceries and no instrument.
Oh my did I feel awful. Truly awful. Out of proportion with the cost of the instrument awful (I’m not sure exactly how much a replacement would cost, in the region of a couple of hundred pounds, certainly not to be sniffed at, but not actually the end of the world).
I unpacked shopping in state of panic. I fought the urge to run straight back into town and see if it was at the bus stop, I knew I needed to calm down and think more clearly. I made myself a cup of tea (always good in an emergency right?). I tried to ring the cobblers. They weren’t in the phone book. I tried to look them up online but internet wasn’t working. I phoned the bead shop – no instrument. The internet connection was still wasn’t working. Eventually I found the cobblers number and rang. No instrument. He offered to run up to the nameless cafe and check for me. In the mean time I rang the bus company. No instrument. After a couple of tries I got back in touch with the cobblers and found out it wasn’t at the cafe. He asked me if I could’ve left it at the music shop, but I knew I hadn’t.
There was a rising sense of panic. At some point I did some washing up to try and calm my mind. Bitchface had a field day at that one. I texted hubby, who was lovely and supportive. I tried to think about how I would feel if someone else had done this (comforting, supportive, forgiving, helpful, at least I hope so) but applying that to me was a step to far (clearly I was careless, stupid, reckless, unorganised). Hubby rang and spoke to me.
I went back into town and checked the bus stop. No instrument. I peered inside the shop windows in case there was an instrument case lying there that they’d missed when checking, but I was too embarrassed to go in any of them. I went back to the tiny music shop. There was a customer inside. I sat on a wall nearby and waited for them to leave. For about 20 mins. It started to rain. I walked round the block. Still a customer inside. I bit the bullet and went in. Stood staring at the floor listening to a talented customer trying out potential instruments. Was eventually asked what I wanted. I explained that I was having a bad day and had lost the instrument unless I’d lost it here. Everyone seemed sympathetic. I looked up and saw what looked like the case where it’d been whilst I was paying. We checked the case. It was the same one. No lost instrument. The shop keeper hugged me.
It took me a while to calm down properly. Several hours. Prolongued by being passively aggressively told off by a teacher I’d never met before in front of my kids and a neighbours kid I was picking up (long story).
But now, now I think I’m a bit proud. Clearly leaving an instrument behind is silly, but leaving it in a small shop crammed with similar cases is an understandable mistake, after all the shop keeper hadn’t spotted it. But trying to challenge my disaster thinking was good. Trying to calm down by drinking tea and washing up was good. Letting hubby know I was having a bad day was sensible. Dealing with it instead of panicing was the right thing to do. Going into the shop was oh so hard, but I did it. And it turned out not to be a disaster after all.