Tomorrow, I'll be skipping town by myself. To Vermont. For ten days. I haven't been apart from the girls overnight in two years, and aside from my time in the hospital when I was pregnant with Greta, I've only been away from Lucia for one night in her entire life, when I went to a baby shower. Needless to say, I'm freaking out a little bit. A lot. I can't imagine what it's going to be like to be apart from them for so long.
I have a good reason for going: the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference at Middlebury, which I applied to on a whim in March. I thought I'd apply just for fun, never thinking I'd really go; but once I got in, I couldn't bring myself to pass it up. So just underneath my jitters about leaving the girls is another jittery layer of anxieties about workshopping a new piece, meeting new people, pitching my work, and being surrounded by full-on literariness for ten days.
It's a mix of nerves that has found its focus in organizing things around the house, stress-crafting, and planning my daily gifts for the girls. (I take any opportunity to shop for tiny things for them, as Andrew frowningly knows.) I have princess Squinkies with tiny castles, Littlest Pet Shop animals (I bought 50+ of them on eBay; Andrew has forbidden me from giving them all at once), books, Hello Kitty Squinkies, plastic cupcakes, notebooks. I don't really think they can be bribed to not care that their mama's not around, but I know they'll like these things, and along with daily Facetime or Hangouts or whatever it is Andrew's going to set up for me, I have to trust they'll be okay.
In my absence, Andrew has decided to guest-blog here at Skipping Town. He's never been alone with the girls like this. He'll have four days on his own before my parents arrive. I'd worry about frantic phone calls, but I won't have cell service.
It's going to be an adventure for all of us.