I want to write. I sit here and stare at the screen and my mind goes blank. I’m too tired to write. I haven’t written a thing in months, not because I haven’t been able to write, but because I’ve been too bleeding BUSY to sit down and write about what I’ve been doing. Now it’s all piled up inside my brain insisting that I sit down and get some of it out before my head explodes. But I can only get a piece of a story here, a fragment there. Instead, I sit here and think about all of the crazy obligations I have coming up in the next few weeks. I wonder. When am I going to ride again? When am I going to relax again?
The other day, I started reading a book. I have no business reading a book, but the compulsion to read is stronger even than the compulsion to write. Once begun, I almost never stop until the book is finished. Oh, yeah, I take breaks for the bathroom and work and eating, but I’m not and have never been one of those people who can plod along reading 3 pages a night. If I really force myself, I can sometimes read only a chapter a night, but if the book is good, all bets are off. The other morning, I got up and read until I absolutely had to go feed horses and get showered and dressed. Once ready, I decided I could read for 10 more minutes before I absolutely had to leave for work.
A thunder cell decided to drift over us at the exact moment I chose to leave. As I picked up my purse, there was a flash. I didn’t even count to one before the crash of thunder. All I can say about PTSD is it’s a real bitch. I stood there in the laundry room willing myself to just walk calmly out to the truck standing 50 feet away and get inside and drive to school. I willed and I willed, but I knew darned good and well I was going to have to walk RIGHT past the spot where the lightening hit the garage. I knew it because I SAW the lightening hit the garage. I could imagine my hair standing up, the sound of sizzling, and then…? I used to think it would have been cool if I had been closer when the lightening hit, maybe just down the driveway so I could have had a better view. Now that I’ve developed a pathological fear of being outside during a lightning storm, I wish I hadn’t seen it at all. I was in the car when it hit. It’s easy to be brave when you’re already in the car. But first, you have to get to the car. If I had only put the book down and left 5 minutes earlier I would have been well on my way instead of being stalked by this cell. I took a deep breath… and walked out to the truck… and survived.
Now that I’m finished reading my book, I can worry about my obligations again. I decided when I started writing this blog that I would not write about work, but sometimes work looms too largely in my thoughts and in writing about it, maybe I can purge myself of some of the crushing weight of thoughts that whirl around late at night keeping me awake. I’ve committed to helping out with the Student Council again. I promised myself I wouldn’t do ASB again, but the bottom line is that they really need help and I know exactly what needs to be done to point them in the right direction. Right now, the number one priority is RAISE MONEY. Can’t do activities without money. Imagine your homecoming dance with no DJ or decorations, your homecoming queen being presented a bouquet of weeds, freshly picked from behind the bleachers—not acceptable.
So for now I have become the concessions queen. For some reason, all of our home games for Volleyball and Football (the only fall sports we engage in because we are so small) are clustered together in the month of September. It makes for one screaming mad whirl of Costco trips and long days spent flipping burgers and cajoling kids to help sell a few of them. Normally, we would take only one or two big concessions for ourselves and dole the smaller ones out to the different classes or yearbook or the Washington DC trip group or even 6th grade science camp so that everybody could have a chance at raising some funds. But when you start the year with a two digit bank account (thankfully, it’s a positive number), you have to be a bit selfish.
Tonight we played a double header in Volleyball. Tomorrow, we have Volleyball, followed by Football—it will be an 8 hour day…on a Saturday. So why am I up writing this instead of catching precious hours of needed sleep? Why indeed—I’m waiting for the dryer to finish drying my “concessions outfit” so I can wear it again tomorrow. It consists of a shirt in the school colors with the school logo embroidered on (and blue jeans, of course—don’t want you to think I’m going around with nothing on the bottom half). I only seem to have one of these shirts right now because, oddly enough, they always manage to get ruined by grease stains. I’m hoping our booster’s president shows up at the game with a few new shirts I can buy. Meantime, I launder.
My big consolation is that it will all be over in about 3 weeks time. Our last concession will be October 2nd. Of course, there is a load of hay waiting for me somewhere on the ranch below. I’ll pick that up on the way home after the game tomorrow and unload it Sunday so that I can take the trailer back to the ranch for my last load of hay. Then we have to finish the hay barn, measure and purchase a bunch of water lines so we can install my new waterers, pick up an excavator (after unloading the last load of hay from the flatbed trailer) with which to dig all of the ditches we need for the lines and the holes we need to bury the waterers. I also have to cover the hay that doesn’t fit into the barn to protect it from the coming winter. All of this while eating, sleeping, working and, hopefully, doing some writing. But no books! Not until after October 2nd anyway!