For almost two weeks now I’ve been without a regular babysitter during the day. Usually I have one that comes by for three and a half hours, two mornings a week. This allows me to get things done. And if I get finished with my errands, my to-do list and my blog commitments, I can use the rest of the time to exercise, or (more often) veg out in my room with a DVD (I am currently watching the first boxed set of “Voltron” episodes). I had no idea how much I was enjoying this arrangement, and depending on it to keep me sane.

Then I had to cancel out on my sitter twice in a row because my son was having surgery. His pre-op doctor’s appointment was scheduled during her usual hours, and then the hospital scheduled his surgery to take place during the next day she was supposed to work. My toddler came through with no problems at all, by the way. Then my babysitter ended up in the hospital herself because she is pregnant and had some bleeding. Fortunately she’s okay, but she’s decided the strain of working is too much for her. So she quit, and I had to do without her for another two sessions. Aargh! Suddenly I was completely stressed out.

I’m lucky. My husband’s assistant saved the day by agreeing to add babysitting duties to her legal ones, and today I had her here for the first time. I raced through my to-do list, which seemed like it just kept getting longer, and I am now well on the way to being calm, cool and on top of things. I’ve figured out how to use my brand new digital camera (a birthday gift), I’ve called Southwest and had those missing frequent flier reward points added to my account, I’ve emailed a complaint letter to Alamo, I’ve written out checks and I’m working on my latest article for my sci-fi TV website about the new fall lineup. Life is good.

I know it’s just a small thing, these seven or eight hours a week, but I am so grateful for this time. I rarely get to relax, but I do get to work on (and usually finish) all my little projects and accomplishing that feels wonderful. Now if only I can get my Friday nights back–my husband’s still playing poker every week, but the baby’s been staying up practically as late as me–then I will be happy with my lot.

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