Ask the Pros by Angela Grace

Me: Honey, we need to  go on vacation.

Wife: (folding laundry): Huh? You want to go on vacation, now?

Me: Yup. Not this minute but how about this weekend? Can we get ready?

Wife: (still folding laundry):   Are you serious? We can’t leave now. There’s a virus going on, there are protests and we have been involved in the protests… it doesn’t feel right to go on “vacation”.

Me: Hear me out.  We gotta go on vacation. It’s important.

Wife: No way, not right now. What’s important is to fight for justice.  We have to get out the vote and keep track of what BunkerBoy is doing and …

Me: Sweetheart.  We are not being effective right now.  The virus is exhausting. We are run down.   A lot of people are exhausted. What have you been telling me about your Facebook friends?  They have been writing that they are not ok.  They are not ok at a deeper emotional level.  What is going on is heart breaking and deeply troubling.  At the same time,  there are people who are strong, who are fighting, who are protesting.  We are not two of those people.  

After a weekend away, we will think more clearly and maybe our sleep will be better.   We need a break. Honestly, we gotta get away  because it’s getting to us.  Imagine, a weekend without bunker boy screen time. 

Wife: Of course, it’s getting to us. Look at the world … it feels like it is imploding! We can’t just leave … !!! 

Me: Why not?

Wife: (voice raised): Because … because … it feels too unstable to leave and go somewhere else. We need to stay home! With the lockdowns and our money coming in a lot slower or even, maybe, not getting paid, I don’t think we should budge. We should hunker down!!! Save our money. 

Me: (giving my Wife a kiss on her forehead):  Honey, we need a vacation. It’s another five months until the November elections. The virus will be around for another couple of years. Our money … it is better to have some good memories before we hit the poor house. We don’t have to spend tons of cash, we can go camping. 

Wife: (finally looking right at me) : Camping?

Me: (the hook is in … ): Yup, let’s go camping. Breathe in fresh air. Go for a walk along the beach or in the cool deep woods. No internet. Just us, together, catching up on what makes us – us. 

Wife: (returning the kiss): So, we have been having a hard time lately, haven’t we? Not us, you and me, but a hard time coping with what’s happening.

Me: (holding my girl in my arms): Yes. We’re not sleeping well at night, are eating too much and I know for me, tears or anger seem to come at the drop of a hat. I need to regroup and relax.

Wife:  (snuggling into my arms): And, I need time to think. Ok, we’ll  go camping.  I get what you are saying. Sometimes, individually, we have to take our foot off the gas, rest and regroup so that we can return stronger, fight injustice with full strength.  And if others would do the same, at different times, we’d all be renewed.  The election is several months out, I hope the protests continue until the wrongs are righted.  If we all rest a little here and there, sleep and eat better, the protests will continue with power, the get out the vote can be more effective.

Me: Correct!

Wife:  Why do I feel like I need permission to take good care of myself and us?

Me:. Can we tackle that one tomorrow?   Do you remember who we loaned the tent to?



  1. Our last two camping trips would have only made things worse. Not great times, lots of rain, either too hot or too cold… but I could do with a camping trip right now too. Good conversation! And I’m glad you two hug each other. We all need that contact, don’t we?


    • Sally, Yes, we all need physical contact and emotional understanding. We hug a lot! For those we can’t hug at this time, my wife and I are known to say, “love you lots!” And, those who find it uncomfortable to say those words have started saying it back. That, brings us joy.


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