Aug 15, 2014

Now What?

So I have been "home" for six days now. I had imagined that this being home thing would involve lots of resting, reading, and eating steak. This imagination is what kept me powering through my last few weeks in Massachusetts. But that old imagination loves to let me down....all the time.  I forgot how much work moving is. Especially with kids. Lots of networking needs to be done. We had schools to visit. We had physicals for sports to get. We had to unpack. We had to unload our pods. We had to go to the store to buy things we forgot or got rid of. Bank accounts. Drivers licence. Natalie's birthday is Sunday so I have had to get ready for that. Lots of phone calling. I even threw a job interview into the mix. I confess that it has been so much I knew I had lost focus and was wandering aimlessly off towards shiny things :) And shiny things are so....well shiny :)

Luckily in the middle of all of this messiness I had a road trip. I have always loved road trips but never really thought about why. But this time I realized I love them because they give me perspective. I do my best thinking in the car. This road trip happened on Tuesday. My girls have some dear friends from Massachusetts who happen to have grandparents who live in Redmond, Washington. Even though we have just barely left Massachusetts the girls really wanted to see each other, because they could. So I sat down and map-quested the distance between Cottage Grove, Oregon and Redmond, Washington and was pleasantly surprised...only five hours and some left over minutes. Totally do-able. For so many years visiting Washington has required a plane ticket. It is such a surreal feeling to realize now it just requires a car. I have always wanted to show my kids where I grew up and all the places that meant something to me. And to be close to the places that are dear to me.

The girls and I woke up at 4 in the morning and were out the door by 4:35 am. We just simply got on I-5 and drove north.... past the gorgeous Willamette Valley. Past Portland. Past Olympia. Past lots of towns in between. Past Mt Hood. Past Mt. St Helens. Past the Columbia River. Some places we went by faster then others, depending on traffic. There were bursts of rain. Some lightning in the distance. And bursts of sun.

Natalie slept a lot of the trip and Tatiana and I fought over what we were going to listen to on the radio a lot of the trip. My dad was very generous and loaned me his fabulous car. Yeah, mooch off my parents much? The ride was so smooth and effortless.

We got into Redmond a little after ten in the morning. I dropped the girls off and then had just a few hours of me time. I had hoped to meet friends during this time but it had ended up being such a short amount of time that visiting was really not going to work out. I was disappointed but what could I do? I had a few plan B's and in the end I ended up choosing to head up to my hometown of Snohomish. Last time I was there was in March and when I left back then I did so with a heavy heart feeling like I would never be coming back. And here it was August and I was back in Snohomish shopping. I love the shopping in downtown Snohomish. So many cute little shops. There is one shop that has been my favorite since I was a kid. I did not buy anything I just wandered. I really needed alone time. This alone part is a part of me I just recently discovered. I always thought I needed to be with someone. I rarely went shopping....or really anywhere alone but now I really need and love alone time.

I picked my girls up a little after one and we headed back to Oregon. Tatiana really wanted to see downtown Seattle proper so we made sure to drive by the Space Needle. I really wanted to stop and show them everything but we had that five hour drive and commitments for the next morning back in Oregon.

When I was not negotiating with Tatiana over which music we were going to listen to I spent most of the trip just thinking and was able to pull myself away from the shiny things on different paths that were tempting me and remind myself of why I chose to be on the west coast and what my priorities are right now in my life. So break down averted I am back on track....at least for today. Hopefully this is normal :)

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