The attempts to slow me down were all around Saturday. It was a busy day, certainly not a day into which any sort of margin had been built, and I was half-crazed trying to get everything done and everyone where they were supposed to be.
We did three birthday parties on Saturday. Three birthday parties AND a family dinner at my grandparents’ home 45 minutes away. It wasn’t chaotic, but it was busy. So, so busy and I had so many errands and felt all day that I was racing the clock.
And those signs to slow down just kept coming.
I had the two big girls in the van headed to the next county over for party #1. Had to stop along the way for gifts and pry them away from Dollar Tree distractions. We live in the country, folks. Which means, at any time you are in a hurry, there will be a driver in front of you just cruising and enjoying the scenery.
They don’t get too many looks at cows and chicken houses in other places, I reckon.
Got to the party. Late. Oh, well. Good times, saw some old friends, kids on the waterslide in cloudy 70 degree weather, even though it’s July. Loaded both of them and an extra up early to make it to party #2. Slow, slow, and slower trolled along in front and I tried to reign in the frustration. Got back home, dropped one off there because the best thing I did all day was enlist the reinforcement of another mom to pick Annabelle up for party #3. Hugged my baby. Admired the work my husband was doing sanding our “new” kitchen table. Secretly cursed myself for offering to be chauffeur today while he was home alone with napping baby.
Drove all the way back across the county (opposite direction from party #1) to deliver kids to party #2. Stopped along the way to pick up an item I had bought off the local classifieds for Gus’s Christmas (look at me, planning ahead). Madelynne was very excited to be in on the secret, but not so excited that we were half an hour late to the swim party. Did I mention the gas light had been on since party #1 and while I don’t mind to push it to the limit, I was a little worried that today might have been too far.
Delivered her and friend to party, got gas, ran an errand, price matched groceries at Walmart, which didn’t have half of what I needed, got held up at the register with an unscannable coupon, finally made it back to pick her and friend up from party only 15 minutes late.
Breathed deep. Almost there. Just had to drop off Madelynne’s friend, get home, reload, and we’d made dinner almost on time.
Finally, there were no scenic cruisers impeding my drive and I was able to just get to my destination. A little too quickly….because there was a cruiser of another kind waiting on the roadside when I cut over from the four lane to head back to town.
I knew the moment I passed him and even though I hit the brakes to slow down, I watched him pull out behind me. Never in my life have I felt I deserved a ticket more. I was speeding, and furthermore, I’d ignored every sign I’d been given all day that I needed to slow down.
He was nice, and I guess I was too. I admitted my guilt and when he asked if there was some emergency I was trying to get to, I just laughed and admitted to the emergency of motherhood: I had a to-do list and I was ready to be done.
He checked my license and registration, and then, praise Jesus for grace and mercy and understanding when it’s not deserved in the face of obvious guilt, he let me off with a verbal warning.
You better believe I slowed down after that. And you better believe that it is lesson I need to learn over and over again.
The run-around may get you from place to place, but the slow down? It gets you there with an idea of what you’ve seen along the way.
And by the way, Madelynne’s friend I had in the car? Her mom forgave me too. How’s your search for margin? Any signs you need to slow down?
Linking up with these lovely ladies. Check it out.