Indulge us on a little storytelling/venting.
Before Sally was born, we bought this stroller/carseat combo, and the stroller has been perfect to have in NYC. It’s sturdy, compact, and super easy to carry up and down subway steps. And it even fits in those narrow grocery store aisles. AND it has a stroller board accessory we could buy for it when baby #2 arrives. Because of all those factors, Johnny and I have been going back and forth on whether we actually need a double stroller. We were considering just carrying the newborn in the front pack the first few months until Sally is ready for a stroller board.
But then the choice was made for us when a biker hit our stroller and broke it a few weeks ago. Obviously, buying a new stroller means our budget will take a hit. But more than that, a biker hit our stroller! With Sally in it!!
Let me set the scene.
It was a beautiful, cold winter afternoon and we were out for a family walk in Central Park. Sally was napping in the stroller, and Johnny and I were enjoying a rare uninterrupted-by-a-toddler conversation. As we were beginning to cross Central Park West (the street parallel to Central Park) to head home, the pedestrian walk symbol was aglow, the light was red for all cars, and we stepped onto that street without a worry in the world.
Next thing we knew, there was a bunch of commotion as Johnny and the stroller were knocked sideways by a biker riding at full speed. Johnny was pushing the stroller, so although it was knocked hard, he was thankfully able to keep it upright. The biker flew off her seat, but she also remained upright.
Our emotions were immediately heightened, as you can imagine.
“What were you thinking?”
“The light’s red!”
“You just hit our baby!”
That was all said by Johnny, actually. As unlucky as it may sound, last summer Sally was hit in our jogging stroller by a biker (also not obeying the rules of the road) when I was out running. So I was in shock that it had all happened again. My worst nightmare.
Sally was crying. I was crying (blame my pregnancy hormones). The biker was nonchalant about it all. “Oh, sorry about that… But it looks like she’s fine.” And then she proceeded to get back on her bike and begin pedaling away. I yelled something at that point, like, “You need to be more careful!” And Johnny followed up with a, “Are you seriously biking away? What is wrong with you?!?” There may have been an expletive involved in one of those questions. Possibly. Definitely.
After we began to shake off the shock and watched the biker ride away, we looked down and realized the hood of our stroller had been broken by this biker woman. And I mean totally unfixable. Johnny started running after the woman at this point. I’ve never seen him so angry in my life. With Sally still crying (and me — remember, I’m pregnant), I began walking home since Johnny informed me he was going to hunt her down.
Unfortunately (thankfully), Johnny never found the woman. He thought about writing a “Missed Connections” ad on Craigslist and sticking it to her (while knowing she would never, ever read it). But sanity prevailed and we let some steam off by talking through what had happened. We came to a few conclusions:
- Don’t bike through red lights.
- Don’t bike into people.
- Don’t leave the scene if you bike into people (especially babies!).
- If you do any of these things and you cross us (for the THIRD time), we will CUT you. I don’t even know what that means, but I will seriously punch some faces soo hard.
Okay, we realized a few other things, too. For one, despite all our budgeting and best intentions to make Sally’s stroller last, we were now in the market for a new stroller. It was a wakeup call that some of the budgeting challenges we encounter are out of our control. We’re not thrilled to have to add a new stroller to our budget, but we feel lucky that we’re out of debt, emergency funded, and in a position to handle the extra, unplanned expense. It also helped us understand on a more personal level that even though many people struggle with budgeting or finances, it doesn’t mean it’s self-inflicted. Life has surprises in store, and sometimes they’re really lame. Hang in there.
Anything mostly out of your control cause an unexpected expense recently? Does it sound like I hate bikers right now? Because I kind of do… at least when I’m pushing a stroller.