Each morning I arise early, get dressed and make the rounds to each bedroom. I gently knock on the wall under the switch plate, call out a name, and then flip on the light. Before they can groan I move on to the next room and repeat the process. Five days a week. The morning process is much easier than the evening process because they are still a little stunned by sleep. Sometimes I have to go back and knock on the wall a little harder and yank the covers off. But all in all our routine is set.
During the week we have many routines that we adhere to just to survive. And catch the bus. I don’t mind regulating our schedules and trying to keep everyone in line because tucked between activities, meals, and meetings, I get to do a few things that I like. I am finally at the life stage where I can go to the quilt shop alone, Hobby Lobby alone, and even eat at Chick-Fil-A alone. As long as I manage to fit it in during certain hours on certain days.
All that to say I have chosen to play tennis on two mornings of the week. I have it scheduled neatly between all of my school volunteer work, prayer meetings, grocery shopping, laundry, etc… I love my tennis days because for two very short periods of time each week, I concentrate on myself. That might sound selfish but I read an article on Facebook which indicated that I need to be good to myself. And we all know that the information on Facebook is accurate don’t we?
One fine, sunny morning I hurry through the daily routine of getting everyone else settled and I headed off to tennis. I had on a cutesy little skirt and an actual tennis top. No old, stretched-out-of-shape T-shirt for me. I MATCHED. I had new pink wrist bands with the appropriate swoosh on them and I remembered to put a hand towel in my bag. All was good.
We warmed up and my first few shots were nice and solid, not hurried. After a few minutes all the ladies were present and we hit some more. It was hot to begin with and then as we worked hard it got hotter. In between shots we would gather like a herd of hippos at the water bottles. We wiped the sweat from our brows, drank deeply, and chatted. I thought I was doing fairly well until the last water break.
I was drenched and the sweat ran right down my arm, through my soaked arm bands and onto the racket, thus affecting my play. Well, sort of. An hour and twenty minutes of drills and drills and drills was affecting my play. I was worn out and sopping wet. The last water break ended with a few groans. I walked to the baseline to take my position for the last set of drills.
The young tennis guru hits me another one. I got it over and RAN (sort of a slow hipping hopping skipping) to the net only to miss the volley. I hung my head in frustration at myself. I knew how to do this.
Back on the baseline again. I am ready. The ball comes directly at me and I hit it hard but somehow it blings off the edge of the frame of my racket and scoots into the other court. One more time. I hit it directly to the girl across the net and she bombs it for a winner. I talk to myself. “OK. You can do this.”
Tennis guru hits it to me and somehow I flub it over the net. I am thinking, “It is not pretty but I got it over the net.”
I am pumped and ready for the next one when the young tennis guru looks directly at me and says, “Take your time Fawn. That was not crisp.”
Crisp? Did he really just say Crisp to me? I am drowning in sweat and the man wants me to hit it crisply.
Crisp? I will show him crisp.
I nod, position myself and hit the next one clean over the back fence.
I break all tennis etiquette rules and screeeaaammmm.
This, this, is what I have chosen to do in my very few private moments.