Last year I went to my first conference. The amount of preparation for that trip was astounding and let's face it, a little neurotic. With RWA Nationals only a week and a half away, I've noticed that many preparations I thought important for my last conference, have fallen by the way side. I've yet to cook and freeze a single meal for my family. They won't starve without me here to feed them. They're made from hearty stock and won't go hungry, even if they have to kill dinner with their bare hands. The need to scrub the house from top to bottom is also gone. I've embraced the fact that my husband is a much better housekeeper than me. He's also a lot better at cracking the whip and making the kids tote their load. So housekeeping? Not an issue.
Unfortunately my self-sabotaging ways and overwhelming need to volunteer has landed me with a whole new list of 'To Dos'. The biggest one is my offer to help with decorating for the FFnP Gathering. This was a fairly easy task when the conference was in Nashville. The Gathering was slated to be held on a steamboat. Voila, decorating already done. Now it's to be held in a large rectangular ballroom. How does one person transform a large ballroom into a a steampunk ball? I'll let you know when I figure it out.
The bottom line is that most of what I need, I'll have to tote with me. I'm the kind of person that likes to travel light, so an extra bag or tote is cramping my style. I have promised myself not to bring a single balloon, feather, or piece of confetti back home, but I have a sneaking suspicion my chapter members hope I fill all that empty space with books for my return trip.
I'm sure things will work out for the best, but like my last conference, this trip has already taught me several valuable lessons.
1. Keep my mouth shut
2. Just say no
3. If I feel the need to volunteer give my services to something that doesn't require heavy lifting.
Who knows, after a few more conferences, I may have this routine down to a fine art.