Just Get Away

I remember being hesitant when I read the email from my auntie asking me if I wanted to go in on a little beach house for a “girls only” weekend getaway.  My mind flooded with every reason why I couldn’t and shouldn’t go.  Who would take care of the day to day stuff around the house?  How was my husband going to handle being the only parent for 48 entire hours?  Who was going to do the dishes and wash the clothes?  Would he remember to give the animals their medicine?  I suddenly envisioned my daughter jumping up and down on the couches at 10 o’clock at night and eating ice cream all weekend…..and then it hit me.   I should be the one jumping on couches somewhere into the night and eating ice cream all weekend.   I needed to not be responsible.  I needed to not have to cook a meal, or wash a dish, or do the laundry.  I needed to be me, and not a mother, or a wife for two whole days.

We made it happen and three weeks later I was heading down to a cottage in Old Lyme, CT.  There was a short lived twinge of guilt as I backed out of my driveway leaving my not so enthused husband and daughter behind.  I had to chant to myself over and over, “You deserve this.  You deserve this.  You deserve this,” and after about thirty seconds, I embraced the mantra and really believed it.  The guilt was gone and I was determined to savor the next 48 hours of some uninterrupted me time.

As I pulled up to the cottage, I couldn’t help but smile when I saw one of my aunties come out.  It is such an incredible feeling to see someone you love so much so excited to see you too…someone that truly gets you and what you are going through on a day to day basis.  We are all moms, so the first words out of her mouth were, “forget your husband, forget your job and the kids…….this is our weekend.  It is about us and not doing anything for anyone.”

Done” I said.

And so it began.   We played games, drank wine, and shared stories about each other…….we laughed so hard that we cried, and we cried so hard that we laughed and decided we were not going to wait seven years to do this again.

There will always be laundry to do, and dishes to clean, but life is too short to live it and not love it.  You just need to get away.

Appreciating The Inconveniences………..

Did you ever hear the story about the man who was late to work one morning because he had a blister on his heel that was so bad, that he had to stop at a store to get a band-aid?  That blister not only made him late to work, but it saved his life.  His office was in the World Trade Center and he should’ve been in the towers that morning of September 11, but because of his blister, he was instead at a local pharmacy purchasing band-aids.

I tried explaining this to my 6-year-old last week when we were on our way to my sister’s house, which is by the way, a haven for all of us.  Arianna had waited a full week to see her cousins and was soooooo excited that we were finally in route that Sunday morning, until, I realized, that I forgot the cheese and crackers that I was supposed to bring.  We were already half way there before it hit me and I had to turn around to go back for it.

Frustrated and crying in the back seat that our normal 20 minute ride would now become a 40 minute ride, she lashed out on me for forgetting what I should’ve remembered to pack in the first place.  My response, and I have to stress that I am not a religious person, was that it was God’s way of saving us from an accident.  If I didn’t think that way, then I too would’ve been frustrated and crying right along with her.   I then shared the September 11th band-aid story with her.

That’s kind of always how I’ve thought though.  But why do we tend to assume the worst?  Why can’t we just believe that everything happens for a reason?  Why can’t the slow person you are stuck behind on a highway during rush hour  be your guardian angel saving you from a tragedy?   Instead of getting angry, why not acknowledge that if they weren’t in front of you, that you would be going faster than you should be and end up somewhere that you shouldn’t?

I believe that my sweater which snags on the screen door on my way out and holds me up an extra 5 seconds is what saves my life from the accident that JUST happened as I pass it on the highway on my way to work that day.

If only people could smile and thank the 80-year-old in front of them who’s driving too slow instead of honking and passing them with their middle finger up in the air while spewing out profanities.

If only they could have patience and empathy for the 16-year-old behind the cash register who is doing things wrong because it’s their first day instead of scoffing and scowling because they need to be somewhere else……..

Life is too short to be wasted on frustration and feeling inconvenienced.  So the next time you’re in route somewhere, and  realize you forgot that special something at home…….turn around and be thankful for the inconvenience.  You just never know when it may save your life.