This photo is from this past weekend. It was 28 degrees outside (for Texas, that's COLD!) and i was wearing damp socks, with my tush in a puddle of ice cold water, and shivering, but it was peaceful and a good way to re-center.
I got a last-minute invitation to spend the weekend at a friend's lake house with my middle sister and her daughter. I brought my kids, headed out of town for a *short* trip, and made up for the time we lost at the holidays together because two of the three members of my family came down with Covid. I think I'm still reeling from the quarantine time. I have Christmas with my kids every two years since the divorce, so there's a lot of pressure to make the most of it. Spending the week cooped up at home without any extra family members wasn't in the plans, but we (mostly) made the best of it. That being said, when the opportunity to get out of town, fit in some sister time, and let the kids have cousin time came up, I jumped at it. At one point in my life, I would have fallen back on my to do list. "Sorry - I just can't this weekend. I need to get the lawn mowed; it's a 4-hour drive there and back, and we'll only have the one full day before it's time to turn around and head back; I don't have an easy place to stash the new puppy; blah blah blah." The excuses are many.
Long story short, I'm glad I went. I didn't get the laundry done. The house was an absolute disaster when I got back, and my to do list for the week is painful, but it was worth it. Nobody is judging my disorganization at home. Nobody but me may even notice the state of my lawn. I leaned on another single friend to watch the pup, and I think *they* actually had fun, too. The kids will remember this more than they remember cleaning the house.
I am trying my best to stay present. To enjoy the things in front of me without worrying about the things behind me or in front of me. Quarantine made me feel separate again. Made me feel like I didn't belong to anyone or any groups. I stepped back from my friend groups, stepped back from my family, and stepped back from the direction I've been heading, and it was a mistake. I'm trying, one week at a time, to rejoin. This weekend, the kids will be gone, and I'll play catch up. Until then, back to the day to day single parent grind. It never stops, does it?