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The day is finally here.

It is no secret that Nick loves airplanes. Everything about airplanes and airports. It is his passion and his hobby. He even tells us that he needs them. As expected, the day we travel is a red-letter day, clearly marked on the calendar on his wall. But so is “Final Packing Day.” Nick has termed the day before the flight as final packing day.

In our house the anticipation is tangible. We have talked about this day for weeks. Nick will raise up one finger and say, “Oh one more thing, we pack ….., you put it on the list?” and he will tell us one or two things that we need to make sure we put into the suitcases. Even though we have traveled together internationally since 1986, he seems sure that Arden or I will forget some important item. So we reassure him that we are putting it on the list.

This morning we have everything ready. Laundry baskets are assembled full of clean clothes and other necessities. Please don’t tell Nick that is actually Mom’s way of “packing.” As soon as Nick is ready for the day, and Arden and I are ready to focus on packing, it always is the same. Nick holds the list and reads out the item, the packing crew (you know who we are!) then finds the item while Nick oversees its placement in either his purple suitcase or Mom and Dad’s other one. Our suitcase is actually purple flowers, but he has dubbed it the other one. He loves final packing day.

The problem is that he loves it so much, that for him the anticipation can be a bad thing. For days he perseverates on packing. He believes that someone has stolen his suitcase and taken it away. He stays awake at night worried that we won’t get the packing done on time. Since lack of sleep can be a trigger for seizures, this is a big concern for Arden and me.

We try everything we can think of. We comfort him, try to show him that his suitcase is still in its place, we talk about the schedule and what we are going to do next. We remind him that we have done this many times, we have it all covered. And yet, on Saturday night, he didn’t sleep again. So neither did we. We were up with our 43-years old baby multiple times that night. Last night was better, but we, the old people don’t recover with just one night’s sleep. So now this morning, instead of heightened anticipation and excitement about packing, Arden and I are only feeling exhausted. Nick however is in his chair yelling out to me “I ready to go. It’s FINAL PACKING DAY! You excited, mom? I ready.”

So again, Arden and I will rise to the occasion and participate in this long-awaited event. As with most of us, worry can detail our best efforts. It can cloud our days until we are not finding joy at all. We are all a work in progress as we embrace our daily experiences. Be sure to look for the joy.

I love it when I hear from others. You might have experienced just the thing that I need to hear. Please reach out and comment.

Also, feel free to share this blog post if you know someone who would benefit.


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  1. Nick is so lucky to have you and Arden! I hope that you are able to both get some rest here soon.

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Announcing that I have finished a book with the working title of “The Fairy Fort.” I am currently pitching it to publishers. Keep checking back to watch the progress of my newest novel.

Here is a quick glimpse of the story.

Sarah Doherty is an 18-year-old living in rural Ireland at the tail end of the Great War. Plagued by severe epilepsy, she is protected by her parents and lives a sheltered, secluded, lonely life. The Fae, local Irish fairies, interfere with her life. She falls forward a century in time through the local fairy fort of standing stones. She had a seizure in 1918 and woke up in 2020. The 21st century world includes life-saving prescriptions, physical comforts and the independence and freedom she seeks. The locals are welcoming and Andy Mclaughlin, a handsome young historian, is intriguing. She doesn’t want to return home.

Then a letter arrives from Boston divulging the story of Sarah and Andy’s lives that are deeply entwined in the previous century. They are not yet in love but as they seek to verify the letter through online resources, they feel a growing obligation to their unborn family and to each other. What would happen to their posterity living in Boston if they don’t return to 1918? Even if they do make it back, her parents can never know what happened to her or that would change everything.

This Young Adult time-travel romance explores the question: Do we have the freedom to make choices or is free will an elaborate illusion?

This is my third book. I love reading time travel romances. I am an advocate for epilepsy awareness because my 43-year-old son has intractable epilepsy. As a genealogist specializing in Irish research, I live part of the year in the village where the story is based. I wrote the book to help young adults understand that difficult situations can change your life. Sometimes miraculously.