So one day I am sure that I will look back on this time and forget how hard it is sometimes doing "everything." And by "everything" I mean: work, travel for work, be a mommy, and a wife and have friends and take care of my house and myself and be a good family member to my extended family. I don't think I do a great job of this by any means -- most days I am just doing the best I can. But just so that I can remember what this moment in time in my life was like it is worth documenting a typical day for me. So this is what Tuesday looked like....
3:00 am -- up to use the restroom -- and then could not go back to sleep.
4:00 am -- look at the clock again after tossing and turning and I think I fall asleep
5:00 am -- alarm goes off -- get up and get ready for my day (I picked out an outfit the night before but now I don’t want to wear it. So I piddle around in the closet finding the right one)
6:00 am -- leave the house and head to the airport -- I notice that my car needs gas but I don’t have time to stop so I will stop on the way home. The light is not on yet. I should be fine.
7:00 am -- park at Love Field, walk to the terminal, check-in because of course I didn't have my boarding pass -- that would require way to much forward thinking for everyone involved including me
8:00 am -- flight takes off to Houston
9:00 am -- land in Houston, get on the rental car bus, my car is a bright blue Jeep Wrangler. It is 30 degrees in Houston that day, so I am freezing and this is NOT a smooth ride. As a matter of fact, I hate driving this car but this is what being on the Avis preferred list gets you for a midsize vehicle. Can't they do some kind of customer research to know that a woman, traveling for business in a dress and a fur coat does not want to drive a car like this????
9:45 am -- starving -- no coffee yet...trying to figure out where to park at my destination. The Tom Tom is good but it only gets you so far. Call my office to get clarification -- of course I need clarification because the details are what makes being on the road in a distant land doable and I NEVER HAVE THE DETAILS!
10:00 am -- find the parking garage. Make friends with the security guard. He asks who I am here to see...I tell him and he says "are you going to be here all day?" To myself I thought "why does he normally keep people here all day? WTH?" So I said "no just 1 hour" politely and parked the car.
10:30 am - have my meeting -- all goes well...
11:30 am -- call the office again to make sure I have plans to meet with one very important customer which of course is not on the agenda. So after apologizing and looking very last minute...we get that set up. I have an hour to kill before my next meeting and I need to park the car somewhere and make a few calls and get some coffee. I know I will put Starbucks in as a destination in my GPS. Tom Tom finds Starbucks except he (Tom Tom) found the most inaccessible Starbucks in downtown Houston which was inside a HUGE hospital. Technically the closest one but not going to work---I park; I make my calls in this freezing Jeep Wrangler in my fur coat -- still no coffee for me.
12:30 pm -- Lunch meeting with my very important customer. She is wonderful. All goes well.
2:00 pm -- Meeting number 3 -- make it in time barely. Park in the wrong garage again (specific instructions would be nice) so I have to walk further than normal. I show up 15 minutes late. I am supposed to leave the meeting in 15 minutes to make my flight on time. Not going to happen. My stress level begins to rise.
2:45 pm -- make it out of the meeting and back in the car. I need to punch in directions to the Airport and once again call the office to get the address to the Avis so I know where to return the car. Punch that in to Tom Tom and get on my I phone to get on my 3:00 conference call that I need to take on the way to the airport. Hope they don’t mind the calming sound of the Jeep in the background -- that car is loud.
3:00 pm -- on the call with a key customer. Can't take notes. Hope I remember everything so I can "flip it to my assistant" to put in our database and so I know what my follow up items are -- this never work out as well as planned for me. Please also note that my flight back to Dallas is at 4:00 and right now I should be returning the car and on the bus back to the terminal and instead I am sitting on I45 in traffic with Tom Tom telling me I have 20 more minutes to my destination. I hope I make it.
3:30 pm -- Pull into Avis. Gladly give back that car. Get on the bus. Change my shoes from 3 inch heals to flats because I am good; but I am not good enough to risk to falling on my behind in the airport when I know I am going to have to RUN to make my plane. It is Parent Night tonight at Aida's school -- that starts at 6:30 and I have missed all of them this year for work and I am determined to make this one.
3:34 pm -- I get off the bus and into the terminal in Houston. I have 26 minutes until the flight takes off. I CAN DO THIS!! I see the short security line, I get in it and the security person tells me I am in the wrong line I need to get in the "other" line that is WAY longer. I tell him my flight takes off in what is now 15 minutes. He points me in the direction and has no sympathy.
3:45 pm -- I am still in line. Now I need to make a move. I begin politely smiling and asking if I can go ahead of all of these other people because my flight leaves in 15 minutes. I make it to the front of the line. The security screener tells me I am never going to make. I smile back and respond with "yes I am."
3:52 pm -- I am through security. Fur coat in hand, flat shoes on and I am running through the Airport to make it on time. I am gate 48. I can see it -- and I can feel that I have not been running in 6 months. I huge reminder that I need to step up my exercise program. But right now that is just a fleeting thought...I have a plane to catch.
3:59 pm -- I make it!!! I am the last person on the plane. I am now sitting in a middle seat but I don't care. I am going to make it on time to Aida's Parent Night!! Who Hoo!!!
4:00 pm -- doors shut -- wheels off heading to Dallas
5:05 pm -- land in Dallas, find the car
5:30 pm -- leave the airport, gas light comes on. I know I am going to be in rush hour traffic but I can stop for gas once I get out of the city.
6:00 pm -- I am about to exit to get gas...I still can make it to Parent Night on time. As I approach the exit, my CAR STOPS RUNNING!!! I ran out of gas. My heart sinks. It is getting dark. I get the car over to the shoulder. I can see the Texaco within walking distance of the car. I didn't make it.
6:05pm -- I call my husband who has class tonight. He leaves work and comes to bring me gas. His class starts at 7 pm.
6:30 pm --He arrives -- puts the gas in my tank. I go to start the car -- it does start. Not enough gas. Now, I am giving up hope of making it to Parent Night. He heads to the Texaco to get more gas.
7:00 pm -- longest gas run in history. He had a hard time getting back onto the toll way and couldn't find an entrance ramp---that is another story completely but I am still on the side of the toll way without a running car. He puts the gas in the car, I turn the ignition. Car does not start. Now my battery is dead and he is going to be late to class.
7:10pm --Alex goes back to the Texaco to get jumper cables. I am sitting on the side of the highway and I follow up on work emails
7:40 pm -- I have given up hope of making the Parent Night. Now, I just want to get out of here and get home. Alex brings back the jumper cables and realizes that there is no way for him to jump my car on the side of the toll way. SOOOO... after calling a wrecker service, and on-star (which we don’t subscribe to) and then getting a little panicked. I called 911. They directed me to the toll way authority.
8:00 pm -- Toll way Authority arrives. They jump the car. It starts. I am off to the Texaco.
8:15 pm -- while filling up with Gas, I call my mom to bring the baby home since I can't pick her up before her bed time from her house. She has knows what is going on because she has seen my status on Face book. Call my dad to check on him. We talk for my ride home.
8:45 pm -- make it home. Aida is ready for bed. At least I get to rock her for a few minutes before she falls asleep.
9:30 pm -- make myself a sandwich with food mom brought over. Pour a glass of wine and take a shower.
10:00 pm -- my brother calls. We talk for a while -- it is good to hear his voice. We laugh about my day.
10:30 pm -- I go to bed and hope tomorrow is less of an adventure.
Next Parent Night I am not booking any travel for that day. This is where help and planning comes in. I am incredibly lucky to know that I can not be successful with any of this craziness without my family. One day I hope this reality feels like a very distant past. Right now, I can laugh about it and just embrace my crazy life.
I love you more than anything Aida -- looking forward to the next Parent Night....