I traveled 14,000 miles. I earned Silver Medallion Status somewhere over Iowa. I quit drinking my daily glass of wine because I realized it probably wasn’t healthy. I lost 7 pounds. I worked a series of 15-hour days. I had several nights where I only got three or four hours of sleep.
I outlined and wrote speeches. I sent random texts to my team as fodder for content. I wrote content. So much fucking content. I fixed the autocorrect of “ducking” back to “fucking” a half-dozen times. I wondered why my phone didn’t know me better.
I lost track of time zones. I longed to see my kids, and then I called home to talk to them and they were being annoying and I felt guilty that maybe I wasn’t longing quite as much.
I ran 60 miles. I got up early and ran in four different cities. I ran halfway across a terrifyingly high bridge, which provided an unbeatable early morning view of the sunrise over the river.
I worked. I worked more. And when I couldn’t possibly work more, I found myself opening my computer to work for just another minute. I wrote a few good sentences, but probably a lot of mediocre ones.
I started getting hot flashes everywhere, especially on airplanes. I wrapped myself in blankets while working backstage because it was so cold, and I prayed for a hot flash, but never got one. I played hooky one afternoon for an hour while working in Savannah and bought the most delicious honey. I worked my ass off for my team and did things that were far beyond my scope, and they did, too. I loved my team dearly. I was glad to say goodbye to my team.
Sometimes I screamed curse words. Sometimes I held my tongue and refrained from expressing my opinion when I knew it wasn’t the time and place for me to express an opinion.
I watched a well-known motivational speaker, and while her stage presence was amazing, I decided that everything she was saying was completely obvious. I wondered if my honesty book is going to get called completely obvious. I decided not to worry about that.
I came home from the final business trip and immediately took my kid to Kansas for his birthday. I saw the prairie for the first time. I decided not to talk politics to anyone I met in Kansas. I landed back home at the Cincinnati airport minutes after Trump landed for a “rally” and I did not scream or cause a scene. I continued not causing a scene when the shuttle bus to the parking lot was held for 45 minutes while every road was closed for his motorcade and the woman next to me said to her four-year old son with fondness and pride, “Our president is in town.”
I slept for 13 hours straight when the travel was finally over. I met some of the coolest people. I had great conversations. I made money. I jotted down notes for books and articles and blog posts in my journal.
I saw both coasts, a giant desert, a giant prairie, a giant marsh, and the most splendid sunrises and sunsets. So many sunrises and sunsets. More than my allotment. So much beautiful pink fire in the sky.