When Plan B is No Plan At All

sunlightOf all the things I think I do well, or even fair-to-middlin’, sitting still is not one.

I don’t know where this particular ability went. I used to be able to chill like a pro. But somewhere around the time the kids came along, and the amount of stuff I had to accomplish in one day skyrocketed in relation to the amount of a night’s sleep, I also realized I had lost the ability to retain consciousness if I sat in the same place for more than 30 seconds at a time.

Even now, when I can be relatively certain of the ability to string several hours of shut-eye together a night and am not in danger of becoming a vegetable if I sit still for any length of time, it feels almost criminal to just hang.

This weekend was a girls’ getaway for a group of about a dozen of us, and it’s safe to guess we’d each been looking forward to the date for a while. Members of our group ranged from women in their mid 20s to early 50s. There were moms of young kids, moms of older kids, and women with no kids. Some are single, others married, representing a broad array of professions. Not necessarily much in common on the surface, save in energy level and temperament, a predilection for laughter and good conversation.

And, not a sitter in the bunch.

Friday night kicked off with a scrumptious dinner, cocktails and an impromptu dance party followed by a hot tub soak, which turned into a winter Olympic competition in the snow, followed by a visit from the neighbors (whom we christened Tammy and Sugar Bear), and a bunch of stuff you’d think was hilarious if you were one of us – a public chronicle of which serve to get me kicked off the invitation list for next year.

And which isn’t really the point of this story, anyway. Sorry if you were hoping otherwise.

We each bounded out of bed Saturday, ready to hit the slopes, or don our snow shoes – by which I mean we wandered out into the main room in search of coffee, looking like zombies and feeling vaguely like someone had landed 747s on our foreheads.

The weather was frightening. Rain was coming down in sheets, winds gusted up to 75 mph. It was a maelstrom that shut down the chair lifts for much of the morning on the slopes and socked us in during prime shooshing hours.

So then a whole lot of sitting happened. And after sitting, we picked ourselves up and went into town to sit in a place with a view. And then we came home and sat some more.

It was mildly frustrating. I don’t shift gears well with this kind of kink in the schedule, and I’d been looking forward to a day on the slopes, getting some quality time with some interesting people, as well as copious sunlight and activity. I had brought nothing for plan B except a book I couldn’t seem to focus on. No rain gear or running shoes, no computer, no notebook.

“Sorry this day isn’t turning out,” our intrepid organizer said to us at one point, as though someone could take responsibility for the soggy weather.

“Hey, I’m a mom of two young kids, you know,” someone piped up. “Nobody needs to apologize for my not having to do anything.”

Yeah, there was that. When was the last time any of us had any amount of downtime? As for me, with kids who are past the random-choking-on-Legos stage, there is still always something to do. Shoes to pick up, laundry to fold, groceries that aren’t going to get themselves, work projects that need attention. Even a simple walk from one end of a room to another can be multitasked. There is always something to pick up, to file, stack, or straighten. To do otherwise would be so unproductive, to not pack an obscene amount of activity into every day would seem almost … lazy.

So we sat for a while. And later we ventured out for lunch with a view of sunlight trying to slice its way through an ominous grey sky. Then we returned to sitting, some of us even (gasp) napping for a while before heading back out again for more dancing, more laughter, and quality girl time.

Each of us having reconnected, in some way or another, with our ability to be still for just a little while.


A few other takeaways from Girls Weekend:

  • Peanuts, when dropped in a hot tub, will not magically disappear. At least not before check-out.
  • I am a terrible judge of bra cup size.
  • There is absolutely nothing off color to be inferred by that last statement.
  • Sometimes it’s helpful to establish a safety word for the weekend, if for no other reason than it’s fun to yell your safety word at random times to elicit a laugh.
  • “Sasquatch,” while fun to yell at random times, is kind of a sucky safety word. I mean, when are you going to be in a situation – say, a conversation with someone at a bar who may or may not be hitting on you, where you’d like a Deus-ex-girlfriend-type escape to the dance floor – and you can seamlessly transition the conversation into one about Bigfoot?
  • And when you can’t remember Sasquatch from Saskatchewan or Shanghai, you may find yourself in a really strange conversation before someone finally gets the hint and comes to the rescue.
  • I have friends who apparently have a great deal of trust that I can blog about girls weekend without saying anything substantial.


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  1. I\’m glad you got a well-deserved break to sit around and do nothing productive, but simply hang out and enjoy yourself and your friendships for a whole weekend!
    The picture is beautiful, too. All that sparkling white snow!

    1. It was crazy, but after we decided we wouldn\’t make it up the hill, the sun came out, the wind died down and it was like someone was happy with us for taking some downtime.

  2. I\’m actually pretty good at sitting around and doing nothing. I\’ve learned to ignore, more like postpone, the mom guilt. Of course then I\’m scrambling later because I feel like I have to catch up.

    1. Sometimes, though, you need that. Not necessarily the scrambling thing. I cam home on Sunday ready to be tense and found that my husband had gone grocery shopping and had dinner well in hand and the laundry almost completed. Still, there was vacuuming to do …

  3. That sounds like an awesome girls weekend!

    And, I get it. I\’m no good at sitting around anymore either.

    I went to L.A. for my nephew\’s 1st birthday, and ended up a virtual waitress. I couldn\’t just sit around, visiting! So I started bringing people food and cake, and eventually I started cleaning up.

    I blame motherhood.

    1. The one time I don\’t try to multitask is with writing. Unless I\’m thinking up a story while in the shower. Or driving. Or mowing the lawn. Scratch that, I do a lot of writing while moving around, just not a lot of getting stuff OUT of my head.

  4. Ha! I\’m a busy body too and can\’t sit still for too long without falling asleep. 😉 I\’m sorry your girls trip didn\’t turn out like you planned, but it still sounded like a lot of fun! You\’re lucky to have such a great group of friends.