with Karli Larson
The transition from stay-at-home mom to divorced-and-working-full-time mom can be challenging, and sometimes very lonely. Throw in a few cats, an ancient dog and one very brave boyfriend, and life gets downright crazy. Join me as I talk through my thoughts and struggles, my miscalculations and my triumphs. We're in this together, you and I.
When I'm not writing here you can find me over at work on the TisBest Philanthropy blog.
I was navigating the precarious zooming of an LA Freeway on Friday morning, an ear glued to the irritatingly last-minute GPS lady and an eye glued to the gleaming SUVs and whizzing green highway exit signs, when my boss stopped mad-emailing on her iPhone.
“Did you hear about that commuter plane crash?” she asked, eyes wide,”Killed 50 people in New York.”
My heart sunk into the recesses of my stomach and I turned my head to look at her, sailing past my designated exit to Culver City.
I have traveled a ton in my life: in my twenties, for pleasure and education, and now primarily for business — and though I’m not flying 8 hours to Glasgow or 14 to Southeast Asia anymore - I’m still on a plane at least once a month. Commuter planes, larger planes, to San Francisco and Los Angeles to meet with clients and prospects and every single time I step foot on a plane I think of my sleeping son.
I let my mind wander: what would his life look like if my plane were to crash? I’m not sure whether his father has the will, the gumption or the were withal to provide for him full time. I think about my parents and how they tire easily now, how my stoic and omni-helpful Mother looks exhausted and winded after even a few hours with my exuberant, endlessly chattering son. I think of the fact that yes, I could probably accept a job that I love less and not have to travel so much. But then I flip flop: but if I took that other job with a Fortune 500 company downtown, I’d have less flexibility. I would no longer love what I do.
Every time I step on to the tarmac, each time I buckle myself in and watch tensely as the safety instructions proceed, I wonder if this morning might be the last time I kissed my son’s sweet sleeping head.
Oh, it’s dramatic, I know. I understand planes are safer than cars.I recite all the helpful facts I’ve memorized since Nolan was born, to combat my irrational fear of leaving him Motherless: I am more likely to drown, I’m more likely to be hit by lightning as I cross the meadow to buy milk, for the Love of All Things Holy.
But I still grip the arm rest and silently wish that the frail red-rimmed gentleman beside me was younger and stockier and the type that could whisper “you’ll be OK, stop your worrying” And will myself to realize that everything in life is a risk: stop obsessing about the ones that are least likely to happen.
And so I’ll get on that little plane again next month. But I will keep my fingers crossed for safety the whole time, as I always do.
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