My girl rushed at me last night in a blur of pink stripes and bouncy brown hair.
"Mami!'' she yelled, running toward me, arms outstretched.
Few sights ever have been better.
I picked my Maria up and squeezed her with all my strength. She squeezed back with all of hers. We both smiled broadly, oblivious to anyone else in the Nashville airport.
I was home after five days away in Denver, where I combined business with pleasure. I got to hang out with my two best friends -- both my former newsroom co-workers -- and work on a consulting gig with one of them. The double bonus, of course, was getting to see their beautiful families and spending time in glorious Colorado, with its soul-stirring views of snow-topped majestic-ness.
It would be an untruth to say I was not thrilled to leave, to be responsible only for myself and not the morning rush, the carpool, the dance class, the breakfast, the lunch, the dinner, the hair-washing, and the bedtime reluctance, and all the other stuff, plus my own work, in between.
And, of course, most of all I wanted my husband, helpful and competent as he is, to get a first-hand look at why I am brain-wave deficient by 8 p.m. each evening. A couple of days into my trip, he said on the phone: "It just doesn't stop, does it?'' Score.
This morning, when my alarm sounded its bossy 5:45 a.m. call, it was my pleasure to hear it. Refreshed and renewed, I woke ready for the routine once again. I walked up the stairs, with coffee for me and milk for Maria, knowing there was absolutely no where else I would rather be today.
For sure, it does me good to get away. And, then it does me even better to get home.