Shannon: an overconfident mom of two
Chris: Her husband
Sprout, Shannon and Chris’s almost three-year-old
Little Bird, Shannon and Chris’s week-old newborn
Act 1: Getting to the Park
Shannon and Chris are sitting on the couch, with Shannon holding Little Bird. Sprout is lying on the floor.
Shannon: Let’s go to the park!
Sprout continues to lie on the floor.
Shannon: Don’t you want to go to the park? We’ll bring Little Bird!
Sprout pushes his toy school bus across the floor.
Sprout: Pee pee poo poo, mommy.
Shannon: We’re putting your shoes on in 5. 1-2-3-4-5.
Shannon walks over to Sprout, grabs his hands and tries to get him to stand up. He goes limp, then stands up very slowly and mosies over to the couch. Shannon hauls Sprout up on her lap and put his sneakers on. Chris straps Little Bird into his car seat, who immediately starts crying.
Shannon: Do you think he’s hungry? I fed him less than an hour ago.
Chris (carrying the car seat out the door and snapping it into the stroller): He’s fine. Just go.
Shannon and Sprout walk outside. Shannon begins to push the stroller.
Sprout: No no no no no!
Shannon: What’s wrong? Please use words.
Sprout: I WANT TO DO IT!
Shannon: Do what?
Sprout reaches for the stroller’s handle.
Sprout: Want to push!
Shannon: Ah. Thank you for being so helpful!
Sprout and Shannon push the stroller for two feet, then Sprout stops and pushes on the foot brake.
Shannon: The stroller can’t move if the brake is on.
Sprout runs to the side of the stroller and peers in. He then runs to the back, takes off the brake, pushes for another two feet, and puts the brake on again.
Shannon: Seriously, what are you doing?
Sprout (looks into the stroller): Hi, Little Bird!
Shannon: You want to see him, but can’t from the back, can you?
Sprout runs back, takes off the brake, pushes the stroller and then repeats the whole process.
Shannon: You aren’t going to do this every two feet, are you?
Act 2: At the Park
20 minutes and an eighth of a mile later…
Shannon: Sprout, what do you want to do?
Sprout runs up the steps and down the slide. Shannon parks the stroller. Little Bird starts crying, a little, animal-like noise. Shannon unbuckles Little Bird, wraps him in a blanket and takes him out.
Shannon: Shhhh, shhhh.
Sprout wanders over to the swings.
Shannon: Do you want to swing? Let me put Little Bird back down.
Shannon straps Little Bird back in. Sprout wanders back away from the swings.
Shannon: Of course.
Little Bird starts crying; Shannon takes him back out.
Shannon: Are you hungry? You’re totally hungry. And I don’t have the nursing cover.
Shannon sits down on the bench, awkwardly cradling Little Bird. She drapes a receiving blanket over her head and Little Bird. As she does so, a father with his three kids walks over to the playground.
Shannon: Oh, crap.
Sprout walks over to Shannon.
Sprout (trying to lift up blanket): Hi, Little Bird!
Shannon (pushing away Sprout’s hand): No, no, stop!
Father at park turns to look at Shannon, who blushes. Sprout wanders away. Shannon sighs and sits for a few minutes. She removes the blanket, adjusts her shirt and returns Little Bird to the stroller. Sprout begins walking in the dirt.
Shannon (to Sprout): Stop!
Shannon pushes the stroller to follow. She stops, abruptly.
Shannon (increasingly agitated): Sprout, come back here! The grass is too bumpy – Little Bird’s head is bouncing around!
Sprout continues to walk.
Shannon (in a stern voice): Come Back Here, Right Now! If you aren’t back by five, we’re leaving the park! 1-2-3-4-5.
Sprout meanders back.
Shannon: We are leaving the park, NOW.
Sprout (slumping on his knees): No no no no no! I want to stay!
Little Bird starts crying. Shannon picks up a squirming Sprout with one arm and pushes the stroller with the other.
Shannon (to the father sitting on the bench, cheerily): Have a good afternoon!
Father (startled): Have a … good afternoon?
Act 3: Departing the park
Shannon is pushing the stroller and holding a squirming Sprout.
Sprout: I want to walk.
Shannon puts him down.
Sprout: I want to push in the grass.
Shannon: You can walk in the grass, but we can’t push the stroller in the grass. It’s too bouncy.
Sprout: I Want To Push in the Grass!
Shannon: You can push the stroller or you can walk in the grass. Those are the choices.
Sprout: I want to push in the grass!
Shannon glares at him. Sprout walks in the grass.
Shannon: Thank you.
Sprout stops and looks down.
Shannon: What are you looking at? Are those some cool rocks?
Sprout leans over, looks at the ground and doesn’t respond. Shannon leans over and puts her hand on his shoulder. Sprout picks up a white rock and looks at it.
Shannon: That’s a pretty rock.
Sprout looks up and smiles.
Shannon: Come on, why don’t you walk on the log?
Sprout runs ahead, with Shannon following with the stroller. He takes her hand and walks across a wooden log, hand-in-hand.