Time To Recharge

Last weekend was definitely stacking up to be busier than usual, and that’s saying something in my life.

Friday—Pick up race packets for my husband and fifteen year old daughter for Sunday’s Fredericksburg Historic Half Marathon. Translation: Drive over an hour through I-95 traffic, which is typically thicker than molasses, then wade through crowds at the Fredericksburg Convention center to pick up race numbers, etc. then fight I-95 traffic, again for over an hour, get back home where my fifteen year old daughter would be getting off the bus along with friends for a study group/sleepover combo (this is an every other week event and it was our turn to host).

Saturday—More teenagers coming over to work on major English project due this week. Translation: My house is going to be invaded by teenagers eating me out of house and home while they make a movie for a school project.

Sunday—Husband and daughter running Fredericksburg Historic Half Marathon. Translation: Get up at the crack of dawn to drop them off close to the start line, drive across town, park, then walk as fast as I can from one location to the next along the race course to take pictures and cheer on husband and daughter while they run 13.1 fun miles followed by a lot of Advil and an afternoon spent on the couch.

And write. I desperately needed to write because I have a mid-June deadline I’m trying to meet and unfortunately life keeps getting in the way. You know what I’m talking about—dishes, vacuuming, laundry, errands, and don’t forget that pesky day job. But I had everything under control, until

Yep, the monkey wrench that seems to get thrown into the best layed plans. This time it came in the form of a phone call Wednesday evening…

“Hello Mrs. Rodgers. Do you remember your 12 year old daughter registering for the James Madison University Spring String Thing?”

Yes, indeed, I did remember. However, she had been third on the wait list since oh, late February or so… and now it’s May… “Yes, she was placed on the waiting list and we hadn’t heard anything back.”

“Well, congratulations to your daughter, a slot has opened up if she wants it?”

“I’m sorry, I don’t recall, exactly when is the JMU Spring String Thing?”

“This weekend. Friday, Saturday and Sunday.”

This weekend!?! My brain quickly whirls through the possibilities. My youngest daughter really wants to do the JMU music thing, but JMU is at least 3 hours from my house. I’ll have to take her there Friday morning, because registration starts at 10:30am, then auditions, get her moved into her dorm and feed her lunch. Then drive to Fredericksburg to pick up race packets, then miracle myself home for the sleepover. Then, on Sunday, after the half marathon, drive another 3 hours back to JMU, to see the 2 hour long final concert, before driving another 3 hours home. Oh, the sacrifices we make for our children!

“Of course, my daughter will be thrilled. We’ll see you Friday.”

So I hung up the phone chanting another chorus of, “Oh crap, Oh Crap, OH CRAP!” and running through scenarios of how useful it would be to have the power of teleportation before going to tell my husband there has been a slight change to our weekend plans.

Thirty minutes later, my husband comes in from mowing the lawn, takes one look at my still panicked face and makes it all better with the words, “Why don’t you just stay at JMU this weekend and write? I can handle everything here.”

And this, my friends, is why I LOVE my husband. He knew I have been running at cheetah speed for weeks and needed some down time. So, I quite literally kissed him right smack dab on the mouth and said, “I think I will.”

JMU was still a long drive, but my 12 year old had a blast and learned a ton. At the final concert it was mind blowing that these were middle and high school kids who hadn’t even seen the music they would be performing until 4:30pm on Friday. And my 15 year old daughter got her project done and beat her previous record, running the half marathon in 2 hours 25 minutes.

And me? I relaxed. I drank a couple of glasses of wine. I took a hot bath where no one felt the need to parade in and out of the bathroom or bang on the door asking questions that could have easily waited another thirty minutes. And I finally got some alone time with my characters without all the usual demands of my life. I got some solid writing done and I recharged my batteries. And it was marvelous!

So do you ever feel overwhelmed? What do you do to recharge your batteries?