I have been working like a driven woman this summer, bouncing from my writing projects to coursework to family time to the business side of my writing and ending up on the sofa late at night with the remote, a Sudoku and something good to read.
Not that I'm complaining - these area all things I enjoy. Still, it was time to find the "vacation" part of "summer vacation."
So yesterday, I took the day off and my daughter and I headed to the Aquarium. This is a trip we usually reserve for a family outing, and the older I get, the less likely I am to venture out on these trips on my own.
Maybe it's that summer is half over. Maybe it's that last week, my 50-something friend headed across the country to San Francisco, next stop Korea! Mostly it's that twenty years ago, I wouldn't have batted an eye at the prospect of taking this trip. I would have filled the car with gas, made sure I had directions and headed out with plenty of music and no
Now, however, I am twenty years older and a mom. I'm the responsible party (would someone please tell me when that happened???) And, I'm not just responsible for myself any more.
So it was time to shake things up a just a little. Time to prove that my twenty-something self was still in there. Time to prove that being a mom means more than just laundry and errands and responsibility.
The scariest part wasn't making sure I was on the right route or making sure I had enough gas or money. It was the fact that once we arrived, my daughter began acting like the parent. "This way, Mom," (actually leading me by gently nudging the small of my back!) "No, Mom, it's over here." (even when I was headed in the right direction!)
Now, a truly cool mom would probably have been amused. I was not amused. I was annoyed. After all, I am the mother! I am in charge! I am respons...oops.
Fortunately, our role reversal didn't last long. By the end of the day, I'd enjoyed a fun trip, spent time with my daughter, made it safely to and from my destination, and discovered that my twenty-something self was still in there under all the parental neurosis. And when it was time to go home, she was the one who needed the nap.
Not a bad day's work - I mean, off. And definitely one I want to replicate soon.