Friday, May 16, 2008

Mass Transit

Forget the car. I love to drive, but I'm not gassing up my tank in excess of four bucks a gallon to drive to Boston today. Between the cost of filling up and the duckets I'll be shelling out for parking at the hotel, I've decided to hop on AmTrak this afternoon for a relaxing trip up to Beantown. It's the same cost--possibly even a little cheaper. More importantly, I won't have to drive home from Boston after two full days of intensive yoga sessions. I can still keep my Om on. Or better yet, sleep.

Honestly. Twenty dollars got me about a third of a tank the other day. I'm so glad I live so close to my office. The bike is going to be put to good use any possible day this summer. Considering I'll have to take the kids to camp every day, I might not get to use it as much as I would like, but any alternative means of transportation is good right now. At the very least, the gas crisis should make us aware of our dependency on our cars--and seek to change that at least somewhat.

Back to Boston: I'm packed. Ready to go. Ready to read and listen to my iPod on the ride up there. Ready to pick up my registration pass tonight and wander Newbury Street, hopefully grabbing dinner at the Pour House and maybe hitting the Puma store for some new kicks. I've also been charged with the task of picking up Nolan a Red Sox hat. I'll do it. After all, I had the freedom to dissent from a Sox family; he can certainly have the freedom to make up his own mind about baseball. Both of my kids can. Why shouldn't they? But Sean...Sean is a Yankees fan through and through. Even though he sometimes wears a Mets hat. "It's okay, Mom," he has reasoned. "The Mets are in the National League."

I'm going to miss the kids this weekend. Since I'm "on" in solo mode 24/7 with them, it's sometimes a clunky switch of gears into "me" time. Sean has a belt test in Tae Kwon Do this weekend; the kids then have a baseball game and a birthday party. I'm happy to be spared the running around, but I'm going to miss the game and the belt test. That bums me out. I always like to be there to cheer the kids on in whatever makes them really happy. So much so that I forget to cheer myself on in what makes me happy. Hence this weekend away, a gift from Ian. An insistence that I get out of Dodge and downdog or upward bow myself into blissful abandon. And besides, I'm meeting my friend Julia for dinner on Saturday. I cannot wait.

Taking time to myself is not always easy, since I am compulsively responsible and "taking care of things". When I recently told Craig I was getting into sewing and going up to Boston for the conference, he sent me a great lil' email reply:

Take more! You can do it. The world will continue without your help. Kids will continue to have fun, get hurt, heal and grow. Houses will be bought and sold and burn and be built. Friends and lovers will come and go. Gardens will grow, die, get
weeds and sprout unexpected neat stuff. So with that in mind, go sew a little pocket thingee. Go flop down on the bed and nap. Go take a walk by yourself with no destination or time limit. Go "be" without any need to accomplish a task or nurture someone. Go get some Moira love. You're doing it now and you'll keep doing it. You rule.

He's right-on, especially about the kids. At Tae Kwon Do class the other night, I had an opportunity to see how Sean is quickly growing into an aware, responsible kid who will eventually do just fine on his own in the world. After I parked the car, he hopped out of his seat and spotted a discarded Poland Spring sports bottle in the otherwise clean parking lot.

"LITTER!" he shouted, looking both ways before sprinting 20 feet to pick it up.

"That's dirty, honey," I said, passively asserting he should leave it alone.

"I know, Mom!" he replied. "That's why we have to pick it up." He carried it over to my car. "Can you open the back?"

I opened the hatch of my wagon. He threw in the bottle. I closed the hatch.

"There," he said, wiping off his hands. "Now we can throw it in the trash when we get home." Then he darted into the building for class. He has such a good heart.

For now, the kids will enjoy a long overdue full weekend with their dad. And at this moment I should probably get some work done here in the office. The train whistle is going to blow before I know it.


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