Yep, you read that right–we are going to New York City. A friend of mine is a music teacher, and she is taking a group of her kids to perform in Carnegie Hall (practice, practice, practice) and she invited us to go along! How cool is that?
I am VERY excited. Now, I’m not what you would call country. (I’m actually coal camp.) We’ve travelled a quite a bit–Philly, Atlanta, DC, Birmingham, Knoxville, Pittsburg, Charlotte, Baltimore, and a few others–but still…..this is New York City we are talking about people! We are going to see the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building, just to name a few. We’ll leave Tuesday evening and be home late Friday night.
I am also VERY nervous. Not about the trip–like I said, we have been to a place or two, and the only part that makes me nervous is the bus ride. What I am nervous about is walking away from my life for four days. I’m sure to most people that sounds a bit drastic, but that may be because you don’t know how anal retentive I can be about certain things.
Primarily, I’m nervous about leaving my daughter. My sister is in good hands, and she’d rather be where she’s going than with me anyway, so I’m not really worried about her, but Evelyn doesn’t really understand why we just sort of disappear for four days. I don’t have any way to explain it to her. She’ll be with her dad and The Grandparents, but I worry. It makes me wonder if she is maybe a little bit more aware than I give her credit for, because now, to make me feel even better, she is sick. Her teacher called from school today to inform me that she was running a fever and lying around. I picked her up early and she has slept in the chair ever since.
I know all of my guilt is self-inflicted, but that doesn’t make it any less. No matter what, in my mind, no one can care for her the way I do. No one. No one can read her and understand what she wants the way I do. I’m just going to hop on a bus and be hundreds of miles from her, which is bad enough, but now I’m going to do it while she is sick.
Don’t get me wrong–I’m going anyway. I’m nervous, not stupid. I have WAY more separation anxiety than Evelyn ever did (I still cry on the first day of school. Really.) I imagine every possible thing that could happen or go wrong, and I have a great imagination. I miss her so much that sometimes I lay in bed in night when I’m away from her and cry. I’m just a great big girl, right? (I miss my husband too, by the way, but I know he can feed and clothe himself with minimal assistance.) I just have to suck it up and have a good time. This will be the farthest I’ve been from her in a long, long, time, and the farthest I’ve ever been while she was mobile and able to get into a lot of trouble. The last time I was far away from her, she was basically like a potted plant. She couldn’t even crawl. Now she’s like a damn cat–just five minutes of not watching her and all hell could break loose. So you see how my mind works.
But anyway, I’m very excited. We will never have another opportunity like this again. My OCD acts up a little when I pack, and I always remind myself a little of Melvin Udall in “As Good As It Gets” when he’s packing for the trip to Baltimore. I even have a list. (People think the fact I make lists and keep things organized is because I am organized, but really the opposite is true. If I didn’t keep things in order, I would never find anything again. Ever.) Anyway, we are all packed up and ready to go. Evelyn and Matt will drop us off at the bus tomorrow afternoon, and I’ll laugh and joke and wave frantically as we pull away. I’ll save the tears until everyone else is asleep. I do have my reputation to uphold, after all.