For the last ten years my husband’s tennis partner has been graciously giving us his Mammoth Cabin for a weekend so we can take the kids skiing. This annual trip was something the kids have always looked forward to. Yet secretly for me it was always been hell. Just the thought that I had to pack 4 kids all between the ages of six and ten (when we initially started) sent me into night sweats. First my husband would have to pull all their winter clothes, keep in mind we are in San Diego where the weather is usually a nice 70 degrees. Every year each child out grew one garment or the other. My job was to go buy the additional clothes that we didn’t have, while my husband took care of the equipment.
Poor guy sweated and cursed every time he had to adjust and re-adjust the skis, pair gloves and find the right goggles. I would help pack the clothes and go food shopping, just because some of the things I could not find in Mammoth. Then we would have to figure out the games and entertainment for the seven-hour drive, and lets not forget about the snacks and random pit stops. After a few years and many stressful encounters we finally got it down. It was ironic that at the same time when we finally got our ritual pat down our kids decided to swap to snow boarding gear.
The Mammoth cabin was spacious enough to accommodate us all, and as the kids grew up they began bringing their friends. As we outgrew the cabin over the years, I have also exhausted my sanity.
It was no surprise that few years ago I refused to make the trip, and my hubby, G-d bless his soul, took all of them and their friends up him self. When they returned full of new energy and great spirits, each and every one of them said that I should not miss this annual ritual and it wasn’t the same without me. How could this possibly be? There was no one there to scream, bitch and dictate everyone’s chores, not to mention to cook and clean for them.
Last year I made the trip and happily acknowledged that this was much easier now. The kids were now grown up, and packed their own belongings. When everyone was dressed for the mountain, no one screamed that they need to go potty right now… and I didn’t need to undress everyone and begin this hell process over and over until everyone was out of the door. Last year I decided that I could no longer ski. My shoulder needed surgery, my arthritis was acting up and maybe I was too old to do this. My kids didn’t need me on the slopes and I noticed that I’ve been slowing them down, so I have decided not to ski at all.
This year I came back with a completely different attitude. I was a year older, more fabulous than ever and ready to take on the mountain. True that my hip was in constant pain and my shoulder was recently operated on, but so what? My first trip was on a bunny slope, I’m fabulous not stupid, this was suppose to be the real test on all my body parts. My daughter and her friend guarded me as I maneuvered myself down the slope and felt liberated. My son waited for me at the bottom of the bunny slope to see if he had to take me home, but I was fearless. I went up a nice mountain with my son and nephew, I felt young and fit. With the music blasting in my ears and my children & their friends surrounding every part of the mountain that I was flying down, I knew that YEAY, I’ve still got it.