School has been in session for about a month and I have already driven kids back and forth to 22 soccer practices, 15 play rehearsals, 9 swim lessons, 4 guitar lessons, 5 piano lessons, made 60 brown bag lunches, folded 47 loads of laundry, tied 88 soccer cleats and spent $847 at Costco.
I’m running away to Amish Country.
Eight years ago, driving back from Cleveland, OH, after spending Thanksgiving with relatives, the DVD player in the car was broken and the kids were hyped to the max on candy corn. By the time we reached Indiana, I was clawing at the door. I had to get out. I had recently quit drinking and the nail polish remover in my cosmetic bag was seriously tempting. It was dire.
We pulled off the freeway, found a hotel, and splurged for the biggest suite in the place. Upon arrival in our oddly homey accommodations was a sign that read:
No alcohol or tobacco products permitted on site. However, we have 29 kinds of pie. Welcome to Amish Country.
Within 15 minutes the kids were in the pool and I was ensconced in a massive hand-carved, king-sized bed, with handmade quilts and cherry pie. It was quiet and all seemed right with the world.
Today when I trounce through the YMCA, amid the squeals, shouts and whistles, carrying two backpacks, a Nintendo 3DS, a wet swimsuit and an extra pair of underwear my child found on the locker room floor, I yearn for Amish Country. But then I need to check my email, leave a voicemail, text my son to remind him to check his email and upload three photos to Facebook to show the world what a dedicated mom I am.
Sometimes I just pretend to watch soccer practice when really I’m dreaming of Amish Country, imagining myself content; sewing quietly in a circle of fellow Amish ladies at a Quilter’s Bee. But then all hell breaks loose when they realize I sew Frankenstein-style. I wonder if The Wives of Amish Country can get hostile, toss butter churners and dis thee?
I’m not sure what the Amish application process is like, but I imagine I have a few things stacked against me: the no-buggy factor, my decade as an undergraduate, and my penchant for using the F-word. I’ll likely get docked a few points for the divorce as well. On a good note, they probably won’t even blink at that unpaid speeding ticket from Indiana last April.
But I think it could be an easy adjustment. I already own all the black clothes (just need to remove the buttons and zippers- no biggie since post- divorce I can’t button or zip most anyhow.) I already gave up shaving my legs. I’d wash my hair less than I already do as I'd just shove it all up in one of those bonnets. No make up. No heels. Now you’re considering it too, right?
So as the weekend approaches, my grocery list is longer than 9 sticky notes, I can't find two matching shin guards, socks or anything and the laundry is piled out the door and down to the mailbox. One of these days, you may see a trail of buttons and zippers right down the driveway leading me back to Amish Jesus.