I don’t often use this space to twitter about boundless joys. For just over eight years, I’ve blogged to find community, and, generally, my need for connection stems from frustrations, sadness, or observations borne of my disdain for what humanity, as a collective scourge, is doing unto itself.
But I’ll be damned if this isn’t the finest weekend I’ve had in years. Decades. This might be the finest weekend ever.
Set the stage? Sure. I’m in up to my eyes at a great job, slogging through a friendly divorce, and raising two amazing human beings who drive me freaking crazy and make my heart ache all at the same time.
There. All caught up.
Now…this weekend. I planned this a few months back, as summer stretched before me in a long string of work, childcare machinations, family trips, and school-free lack of ritual. I decided that a couple of family trips were not serving my Q3 goal of restoring some of what wall-to-wall kids and work having been doing to my brain and soul.
Yes, I actually have a formal, quarterly goal to chill the eff out. I’m too motivated by formal goals to do anything not on the list, so I put myself on the list.
It’s like I’m growing as a person. Kind of.
I asked my BFF if she wanted to spend Labor Day weekend holed up in local spot by the ocean and hiking trails. Our relationship is anchored in 25 years of enjoying each others’ company but also in being fully willing to wander off by ourselves. We don’t ask each other permission, we don’t mince words, we don’t need to be together a lot, and we don’t get too easily annoyed by each other. We get SUPER annoyed by other people, though. We’re gonna be the best single old ladies, ever.
Like these ladies.
So we spent late Friday to late Monday in a tiny corner of the world right under the Golden Gate Bridge. I picked her up after a meeting at the mediator’s office, where I wept through a discussion of how important revokable trusts are in a divorce, because from here on, the state will assume that my almost-not-husband and I want each other to burn in a fiery hell of destitution and legal disempowerment even regarding our own children. My weekend companion and I took several calls for work, powering through an afternoon of work in half the time, setting up our teams for wild successes next week. Friday ended about 3pm, and my dear friend and I drove across the incomparable Golden Gate Bridge to check into the hotel.
We supped, we read, we ran, we slept. That was the whole weekend. On our own terms, in our own time, at our own pace, for days and days, on repeat. Eat, read, run, eat, read, sleep. In perfect weather. With gorgeous views. In silence, most of the time, but also talking about things small and tall.
There was only one problem: I’m not used to luxuriating in wall-to-wall “there is no wrong choice.” I’m used to cramming little bits of sanity and health into giant gobs of should and must and have to and hurry up.
So I woke panicked because I missed my kids and was sure something was wrong. (There is nothing wrong. They’re healthy and happy and three days without me is a vacation for them, too.)
And I woke panicked because I’d forgotten two things at work. (Whatever. I’ll add them to the long list and get to them as priorities dictate. The work is never done. Ever.)
And I woke panicked because the trip is coming to a close and I still have book and work and handwritten letters to finish. (Yep. That’s as small as it sounds. Cost me three hours of sleep, though. Midnight panic, 3am panic, 5am panic. Super useful way to spend the last night in a quiet, solitary space.)
Most people don’t get this. They can’t afford to take vacations. They can’t leave their children with someone else. They don’t have the time off work, especially with multiple jobs. I’m incredibly lucky that working my brains out and being in the middle of a divorce means I can take vacation.
And I’m immeasurably lucky that I have a friend who makes the whole process exponentially better.
May you all have something like this, and so much more.