Last Friday night I had plans. Make dinner, hug and kiss hubby and daughter goodbye as they head to a concert, spend the evening writing in quietness. Simple. It wasn’t.


Late in the day, I called tech support to fix my printer thinking it’d be a quick fix. Fifteen minutes passed, then thirty … no dinner made, concert goodbye getting closer, no solution to printer problems.


I handed sticky notes to my family:


“Can you make dinner?”

“Don’t forget earplugs.”

“Almost an hour and STILL no progress!”

“Have fun.”


My family left for the concert. I sat stuck on the phone.


“Will this take very much longer?” I said looking at the clock anxiously bouncing my leg.


Thirty more minutes passed, then sixty. I reminded myself that I could never be a tech support person–I would pull out my hair. A mound of patience is needed for that job! Clearly I don’t have that much patience.


After 2 1/2 hours, my printer printed and I hung up. Starved, I made myself dinner. Once I finally reached my office again, I lit my candles and sat down to write. After a mere ten minutes of my coveted quietness, the phone rang.


“Mom. They don’t take debit cards and that is all Dad has with him.”


“What? You mean the concert is done already?” My mind immediately went to why the artist couldn’t have sang longer.


“I want to buy a T-shirt and CD, but they only take checks or cash.”


“What are you asking me honey?” I said knowing I wouldn’t like the answer.


“Can you bring the checkbook to us? I really, really want her to sign them.”


All I could think of was the 20 minute drive to the concert and the measly 10 minutes I got.


“Mom? Are you there?”


Just breathe slowly … inhale.






“Yes, I will come down. I’ll leave now.”


Did I just say yes?


As I drove, I argued with myself.


Selfish Me: Nothing went as planned tonight.


Caring Me: Part of being a parent means learning it isn’t about me.


Selfish Me: Yeah, but I needed my writing time. I’m on a deadline!


Caring Me: What about the concerts you went to as a teen. You didn’t get autographs. She has that chance tonight.


Caring Me won. I couldn’t deprive my daughter of an once-in-a-lifetime souvenir. On the ride home, I told her how thrilled I was she got her autograph and picture taken with the artist. I meant it.


The next day, I got my quietness time while my hubby and daughter did grocery shopping errands for me. It’s what being a family is all about–we help each other out!