I drove 9 hours round trip today to pick up one raccoon. Not very efficient but it needed to be picked up (to be tested for rabies). I drive a lot for my job as I work in both Kentucky and Tennessee and log many miles in those two states. I have found that driving through the mountains in Eastern Kentucky especially is very cathartic to me. Most often I am driving on curvy two lane mountain roads where I have to actually pay attention to the roads and not zone out completely like I do on interstates. I have noticed that this time I spend driving really centers me. Lots of times I listen to NPR. I am such a dork I always try to have NPR podcasts on my Ipod to listen to when I drive. I have been doing my current job for three years now and I have come to really look forward to my drives. When I am not in the mood for NPR I will play some tunes from my ipod and sing along. All of this driving time is time for my brain to not think about a million things at once, I can't check my email, or make phone calls (no cell service in most areas where I go). I really need this time to decompress and just let my brain rest for a bit. I have noticed that when I am not trying to do many things at once and just drive and listen to music I can often calmly and rationally think out situations and problems. If I feel stressed or angry about something, calming down and thinking things through is usually just as simple as getting in my truck and hitting the road for a few hours.
Today I planned the next month and a half in my head. I planned a trip to Knoxville next week for work - figured out how Shawn and I would juggle Fisher and then went through everything I need to do in Knoxville for work and to visit my grandmother. Then I planned out all the cleaning I have to do this weekend to get ready for Fisher's first birthday and then planned and set up his party. I went through several more things coming up and came home from the drive in a good mood, feeling somewhat refreshed. And then I walked into my house with dirty diapers waiting to be washed, emails needing to be read and responded to, dinner ready to be cooked, Fisher wanting some Mama time (which I love!), and Shawn needing to run some errands. So relaxation is over until the next Eastern Kentucky drive.