Friday, April 13, 2012

The Devil is in the Details

In just a couple days, DW and I will be leaving on a business/pleasure trip to Palm Beach.  We will be gone for the better part of a week and there will be NO KIDS!  I really am excited about the trip - who wouldn't be?!?!?

We took this same trip three years ago.  At that time, the girls were 6 (1st grade), 4, and 1.  We decided the easiest thing to do was just to take Rachel out of school and give them to my parents for the week.  I hadn't left them overnight many times and that was the first time I left the youngest one overnight.  It wasn't easy.  I knew they were in very loving, capable hands, but they weren't with me.  Even though the trip was great, I missed my babies.

When I found out in January that we would be going on the trip again, I thought it would be so much easier this time.  After all, they are now 9 (4th grade), 7 (1st grade), and 4.  They can all express themselves very well and they can all understand the circumstances.  However, this time taking them out of school was not an option (they are already out this week for Spring Break), so DW's parents are going to be taking care of them at our house and they will be responsible for EVERYTHING I usually do.  Now don't get me wrong - DW's parents are fantastic!  They have raised five children of their own and they are certainly very capable of taking care of the girls for a week.  They already know our general schedules, too.   My parents are just a couple of hours away should they need "back-up" and the girls absolutely adore all of their grandparents.  So what's the big deal??

This time, it is not so much an emotional thing for me (although I will certainly miss them - a little).  It is, admittedly, a control thing - as the saying goes, "the devil is in the details."  This week, I have been putting together a portfolio of sorts for my mother in-law spelling out the details of the week.  Of course, it includes all of the emergency contact information - doctor, dentist, orthodontist, school, preschool, etc.  It also includes a schedule for each day including pick-up/drop-off times and extracurricular activities.  Then there are three pages about packing lunches and a page about morning routines and bedtime routines.  In an effort to avoid more pages about clothing - (no flip-flops at preschool, older girls have P.E. on certain days and must wear tennis shoes, etc.) - I am considering just planning their wardrobes for the week and hanging outfits in their closets with labels before I leave.  I also have to leave money for the kids to take to the book fair at school and write notes to all of their teachers.  The details are overwhelming.  There is so much that I just do without even thinking about it - so much that is just part of my "mom routine."  It is not until I try to lay it all out for someone else that I realize the enormity of it all.

Once again, I know that the girls will be in very capable hands.  They will be safe, well-fed, and very loved while I am away.  I just want things to be as normal and easy as possible for everyone, my in-laws included.  With children and crazy schedules, normalcy comes from details.  All I can do, though, is prepare in advance as much as possible, have confidence in the kids and the caregivers (which I do), and then let go - let go and know that everything and everyone will be just fine.  Perhaps it will be easier to let go and remember that when I am on the sunny beaches of Florida listening to the ocean! :-)

A picture from our last trip three years ago.
Kids - what kids?!?!?

1 comment:

Martha said...

I'm so jealous!!! A weekend (week?) away sounds marvelous. I know what you are going through, though. We had a week away two years ago and I went through the same thing ..... planning, writing out notes, making lists, hoping for the best. I often feel like what I do as a stay at home mom is meaningless until I start to write it all out for my parents!

Have a fantastic break. You deserve it!

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