I've been increasingly overwhelmed these days as the pressures of work and home life start to ramp up mid-semester. Every night Ryan asks me how he can help and every time he asks I say "I just need like two or three whole days away. Not an hour at a coffee shop, an entire day with no obligations that I can use to do whatever I want." Well this weekend was The Blathering, and BOY did I get my free weekend!
Friday afternoon as I left from work and passed the exit for my house, I wanted to turn so bad. I was suddenly terrified to hang out with all these women I didn't know and not exactly sure of the directions I had scribbled on an envelope in my purse. But I found it alright and was greeted with a huge hug and many happy smiles and about a hundred different kinds of cupcakes. It was the right decision.
Everyone I met was wonderful, but I spent the most time with these ladies after I gave them a ride to the hotel in Ryan's (formerly my) Neon Saturday after brunch. We bonded over the lack of air conditioning and my ever-present fear of mechanical failure as well as the copious amount of dog hair in the back seat. And then we bonded some more in the hotel room watching Goonies while one of them pumped before we went back to join the party. Pumping is way better then the human knot game as an ice breaker, as you know.
Ryan had the kids out on a picnic by a river and I couldn't reach them Saturday, so I just kept having fun. The day began with brunch and then we went shopping. Every uninterrupted bite of eggs benedict and leisurely stroll through a cluttered antique store took me a little bit further away from the real world and, you guys, it was NICE. I had five hours until dinner and I did not know what to do with myself. I could take a yoga class! I could go to Marshalls! I could go to a real store and look for boots!
I took a break in the afternoon to go to a friend's Halloween party with Ryan and the boys (so much fun, forgot to put them in costumes, Spiderman came!) then headed back downtown for dinner.
I made two wrong turns (really, really wrong turns) and got there late and stole a place setting of a back table so I could squeeze into a table with my friends. Dinner? Was fun. Did not notice everyone wearing pants when I said "Hey, let's all pull our skirts up!" in this picture.
It was really, really fun. *I* was really, really fun. It's hard to get out of stressball mode when the family is around, you know?
There was a valet! And delicious passed appetizers! And a wonderful meal! With dessert! And there was wine! Lots of laughing! And many new friends.
I had planned to leave at 9:30. They kicked us out at 11:00. When I called Ryan to check in he answered on the first ring. I am not a stayer-out-later. This was very, very good for me.
There was much hilarity as we waited for the valet to bring the Neon around. "It's the classy one!" I called out as he disappeared into the night with my ticket. And then he brought it up and the light glinted off the paint-less roof and we laughed and laughed and laughed.
And then we got in, me and these new friends to whom I'd just offered a ride, and there was NO GAS.
I got home at midnight and it took another hour after that to calm down and go to sleep. Despite the late night, I felt like a new person all day--calmer, more patient, more fun, more willing to do house chores cheerfully. A break for Mama is good for EVERYONE and today was a great day.