It’s the last week that really gets on your nerves.
Never mind that some people have to wait a year or more. They all have their countdown clock of choice. Some have it right on the computer so that they can watch every second tick by. Ummmmm, no thanks. I’d rather put it on the calendar and see the big picture. With a triple digit number to watch disappear, it’s nothing that I’ll get to excited over. After all, that really is a loooong way off. A small celebration when we hit the “DD” plateau. For the sake of those that may not be familiar with that level, it is the much anticipated “double digit” in the ongoing countdown. Now that’s something that will put a smile on my face.

However one does their backward listing of days left to go, we all have developed ways of coping with, for some, the long cold winter days and nights, the endless hours thinking and dreaming and talking about “the trip”, scheduling all kinds of appointments so that they won’t conflict with “the trip”. The list is endless. None of us can just pick up and go at a moments notice. Well, I suppose there may be one or two. But for the vast majority of us, there is a lot that goes in to taking “the trip’.

And I would imagine that, again, the vast majority of us, would do whatever it takes to make sure everything is taken care of so that we can take “the trip”. I think that It’s safe to say that we do all that willingly, knowing the rewards we will reap later on. An investment, not only monetarily, but also in an adventure that will play out in your minds over and over again for years to come. I wise move, don’t you think?

So here we are. Hundreds of couples going about their busy lives at home, doing all the shi…. ahh stuff, that fills our day to day existents. Expending huge amounts of energy, time, and money to drag ourselves through each and every beleaguered day. One after another, with seemingly, no end in sight. “Oh joy. Another day has dawned. I wonder what life will have in store for me today”. Five minutes later. “Oh great!! I’m late. Now I won’t have time to stop for coffee. Damn. This is going to be another one of those days”.

Pause. Breath. Much better.

One must remember that, as we drift and meander through our river of life, struggling to cope with each new situation, we, that have a trip to Couples, either booked or in the planning stage, have a secret weapon. We can use it daily to remind ourselves why we’re working our asses off every day. I mean, beyond just paying the bills and stuff. There has to be a greater reason to exist. Something beyond fantastic or wonderful. Something that will make me get out of bed in the morning. Besides having to pee. Something that will fire me up while I’m downing my Honeynut Cherrios with strawberries, knowing that in just a few moments, I have to get in the car and drive to work. A certain something.

The secret weapon, I spoke of earlier, is the day that you eliminate in your special “countdown ritual”. It brings such a satisfying sigh of “ahhhhh, one less day to go. Mmmmmmm”.

While it can’t completely wipe out all the hills and valleys in our way, it can be a tiny, soft, warm, comforting reminder that the trip we have planned for Couples will be fantastic, wonderful, super, outstanding, yada yada yada.

It may seem like a small thing, crossing out another day. It’s not so much about the tiny day, as it is about where all those tiny days are leading to. The long awaited, overdue, much anticipated, talked about, and now I just can’t wait to get there already, end, is in sight. For us, today, Tuesday, our digit is 9. But it’s after 5pm, so I’m jumping right down to the number 8.

The weeks and months of planning, scheming, working, and all the rest, have all come down to this last obstacle. The last week to go. Maddening, I know. Stressful, right again. And the closer it gets to that exact moment when you turn the key in the lock, and close your door, headed for the airport, the more nerve wracking and anxiety ridden moments we all have.

I tried stomping my foot on the floor, and yelling, “I WANT TO GO. NOW”, like a six year old would do, but I only hurt my foot. Next time, I’m going to put on my sneakers on instead of my slippers.

There’s no getting around it. A measly seven days is all that stands between us and a pattie at the Beach Side Grille. I’d like to tell you that seven days is a piece of cake. No problem. After all, I’ve waited this long. But I can’t tell you that. Because I know that the next seven days will grow in intensity and difficulty. While I will be ecstatic to see each 24 hours fade away, it will also heighten my awareness that I am almost at the end of my long wait. Yin and Yang

Yup. Seven more. Whimper. Whimper.