Jill Elliott Vardaman had a Walgreens day. Not sure what that means? Well, for the stay-at-home mom and her husband, it's code for a very bad day. In a Facebook video, which she filmed in Aisle 24 of her local Walgreens, she explains:
My dear husband would call me coming home from work and say, "Hey, do you need me to pick anything up?" I'd say, "No, I need to run to Walgreens." And he'd say, "What do you need? I can stop." No, I need to go to Walgreens. I need to count toothpaste, I need to read every greeting card, I basically need to run away from home. I always promise to come back. It just means it's been rough and I need to get away. So for the last nine-plus years, that has been code in our house for if I've had a bad day. So if I say, "Yeah, it's been a bad day," he'll say, "Is it a Walgreens day?"
Some days she's fine, but when things at home are especially hard? "There's not even a Walgreens big enough," she admits. "The distribution center would not be enough."
When she takes her self-imposed Walgreens "time-outs," she makes sure to follow the same rules she enforces with her own kids — namely, that time-outs last for one minute for every year of age. Her daughter, Ella, for instance, is 7 years old, so her time-outs last seven minutes.
"Well, I'm 40-plus years, so I get 40-plus minutes of time-out until I need to go home," she says.
Realizing she only has about 20 more minutes before she has to return to her family, Jill acknowledges that her little "corner of happy and healthy" helps her be a better mom: "Sometimes stepping away for a brief moment allows me to return and do just that."