Tomorrow my girls are out for spring break at noon. We are scheduled to go to Abilene shortly after that to visit my original alma mater, Abilene Christian University. They are having a college preview day for high school students. Their school takes trips each year to visit colleges, but I knew they would never include ACU in their plans and I want them to have a good idea of the wide variety of colleges available.
When I first got the notice and realized that the dates matched up with their school holiday, I made arrangements for us to attend. I even made a hotel reservation, a month in advance, which is really unusual because I generally wait until the last minute on those details. In the last week, I also filled the car with gas, got the registration done (only one month late, again something that I usually delay for several months!), and even got the oil changed 600 miles before I had to (another item I NEVER do early). I wanted us to be ready to embark on this quick adventure and know the car was ready to go. All this preparation made me recall the hundreds of trips I made between Dallas and Abilene in cars that were pretty much on their last leg, some with windows that would not roll up or down, missing windshield wipers, holes in the gas tank, cracked blocks, and the only one that ever actually caused a problem was a broken alternator belt.
I loved going to school in Abilene, just not at first. I spent my freshman year at home going to Mt. View, the junior college here, because I had spent the money I had saved for college and went on a mission trip to Scotland instead, so I stayed home, taking classes, and trying to earn enough to start in my Sophomore year.
The first year in Abilene, I think I cried on every return trip to school. Eventually I made friends, began working part time, and really appreciating all that the opportunity provided, so much so that by the end of my Senior year, I cried because I had to come home. I knew I was coming back to Dallas and was so sure of it, that even 2 different marriage proposals were not enough to keep me in West Texas (and neither of them would fit in Dallas).
So when I graduated, I came home, sure of my future, meeting Mr. Right within the first couple of years, before saying I do, and by the time I was 25 - 28, that white picket fence and a shared life would be my destiny.
Only the problem with plans is I did not know what the future would hold and instead of making dates to uncover Mr. Right, I was making Doctor appointments, trying to recover and stay well after my, well, I'm still not sure what it was, whether it was a stroke, a cerebral hemorrhage, or just a giant aneurysm that suddenly became a problem! Anyway, none of what I planned in Abilene ever happened and for a long time, I was just glad to have made it another year, especially the years I stayed out of the hospital. I even gave up on the plan to have 2.5 children, which was the norm at the time, and never expected to have children to show where I went to school.
See, this is where my life took a much better turn than I had ever planned and now I have my two wonderful daughters, who probably have very little interest in seeing Abilene, but for my sake will be troopers and never complain.
So back to planning. After doing all of this prep work, which is all unusual for me, I am now just one step up from being sicker than a dog. I don't know if it is a sinus infection, allergy attack, but I just know my head feels like it is in a vise, and my cough sounds like the bark of a rabid dog. Ugh, why do I try to make plans!