This week we are moving. The countdown is on. Just three days to go. Rather than packing and organizing and preparing for our new life in a new home, I’m at a conference in Chicago as the clock ticks down our last days in our first home. Crazy, right?
Well, in fairness, this is business travel, not a frivolous getaway and, Marketing to Moms is a really good conference. Although the notion of moving has me totally FREAKED OUT, I have convinced myself that getting away for a few days will help me be better prepared to enter the fray when I return. Even though my days here are long and filled with working and networking, it’s still a break from the chaos, stress and pressure of juggling a job, five kids and a pending move. I’ve decided that there are some distinct advantages to this admittedly untimely trip…
I feel appreciated. In the 8 hours since I’ve left home, I’ve fielded texts and calls seeking the whereabouts of:
- CCD homework (my oldest son)
- Thank you notes (my daughter)
- Dinner (my husband! Even though I left food in the fridge and a message on the white board in the kitchen!)
I feel accomplished. Not only did I advise (accurately!) on the whereabouts of the aforementioned items but I also found a few minutes to make a few calls that are mission critical to our move…
- The movers (no doubt we need them!)
- The mortgage company (one of the more important details for a closing, I now understand!)
- The school bus company (which will be a key requirement for my grammar schoolers on Monday morning at 7:30!)
I’ve had a few opportunities I rarely get at home…
- The chance to have dinner with a great friend who lives in Chicago and I haven’t seen in far too long – as evidenced by her greeting: “Wow! Look how much lighter your hair is!” By “lighter”, she meant “grey.” Note to self: must see her more often and/or do a better job with hair color!
- Shopping! My 7 year old has been walking around in pants that suggest he has either A. Survived or is B. Anticipating the great flood. This kid’s pants are so short, he’s at risk for frostbite on his ankles. And shins. The boy needs pants. And, since I had the good fortune of walking by Old Navy (which would never happen at home!), now he has them. And can look forward to warm ankles. And shins. Amen.
- Sleep! No middle of the night visitors — no one who has to pee, feels compelled to tell me they peed in the potty or alert me to the unfortunate fact that their bed is wet. And, though I love him, there is no furry four-legged friend trying to jump on the bed in the middle of the night… his own way of telling me that he has to pee!
Before signing off to indulge in some of that rare and elusive shut-eye, I have to mention one other benefit of this trip – and of business travel in general. It is a chance to mix and mingle and be motivated and inspired by other working moms. You know who you are. You too have left sweet, needy children and husbands who can’t find their dinner at home. You too have struggled with the juggle, the pressure, the quest for balance. And, from what I’ve seen, you have succeeded. And, given me the confidence that I will too! Now, sweet dreams – this mama needs to get some rest so I return home ready for this move!