Thursday, February 27, 2014

I looked into the Mirror and the Dowager Countess Looked Back

Subtitle: I'm exhausted. Whipped. Spent. Done in.

It all began with a whirlwind weekend in Orlando. A seven hour drive south. Two days hitting the parks from dawn until way past dark. A seven hour drive north. And then: big geometry project, Science Fair Part I, packing Dave up for his trip to Alaska, a 7:00 a.m. flight, Science Fair Part II, Term Paper Part I, post-op appointment with the oral surgeon, supplying a tray of sandwiches for a wake at church, the first week of soccer season, and a full day subbing in the first grade.

I bailed on the oral surgeon, and the first soccer game was rained out (Thank you, good and gracious God).

But I'm exhausted. Whipped. Spent. Done in.

Disney means walk and walk and walk except when it means run to catch a shuttle or a monorail or a kid who's disappearing. It's all great fun, of course. And a great way to ward off the damage that McDonalds and funnel cake hath done to one's figure. But exhausting. Exhausting.

The Science Fair means print and cut and paste and edit and re-print and re-cut and re-paste. Lather, rinse, repeat. Exhausting. Cool, rewarding, totally worth it in the end, but exhausting.

Subbing means being On, Fully On, non-stop for seven hours on a rainy day with no outdoor recess. Exhausting. Let's talk about fractions. Let's sit in our chairs. No more sharpening pencils. (Here I'll add an aside: If pencil sharpening ever becomes a marketable skill, John and his classmates are destined for greatness. Yes, they are. And another aside: Should drought conditions return to the Augusta area, just schedule Kelly to sub because it rains every. single. time. I sub.Yep, it does.)

In the wake of this week, I should begin a brief tutorial on the fine art of graciously saying No.

No, my calendar is completely packed that week. No, I'm sorry; I'm maxed out. No, but call me another time. No.

When I hit the wall  -- as I have at least twice in the past seventy-two hours -- I go all introspective and wonder why I do the things I do. And there's value in this, of course. Certainly, time management and prudence and planning are important, but, truly, if we wait for life to be slow and convenient and easy, we'll miss many an opportunity to make memories, many a chance to serve others.

As we headed down I-4 East out of Orlando, Ainsley said, "Raise your hand if you miss Auntie Kate!"

Five hands went up.

Worth it.


But worth it.

And if you think the title of this post is a shade over the top, ummm, no. After subbing all day Wednesday, I had a two hour meeting followed by a shock and awe grocery store run. I unloaded my groceries and pulled out my credit card. The cashier looked at me and asked, "Are you a senior citizen?"

I am not even making that up.

So while the last seventy-two hours have been high speed, high stress, the next seventy-two hours should border on leisurely. Top priority: early bedtimes. And maybe a little make-up.


Kris said...

I laughed about the senior discount because my best friend just went to Kroger yesterday and texted me that when she went to pay she noticed that the cashier had given her the 10% discount WITHOUT EVEN ASKING!! And she's only 46. She was a bit disturbed....! Hope the schedule calms down a bit.

Christine Laennec said...

Oh my, Kelly, my sympathies are with you. Actually, you look a lot like Elizabeth McGovern but without a single wrinkle. I often look in the mirror and think I look 110. Early to bed tonight for me, in fact.

It's good that there is such a thing as a senior discount in stores. The only financial advantage to being older here is that in Scotland you get free bus travel after the age of 60.

Rest up!