By the time I left on my recent trip, I was in desperate need of a break. I needed to not have to make life or death decisions and to not carry a pager and to not have to be witness to the inevitable human suffering that accompanies medicine. I was spent.
Unfortunately, the Middle East is not the most relaxing place to visit*, and traveling with one's soon-to-be-ex-girlfriend and her family does not make the experience any easier. At the end of my trip, I felt just as stressed as I had been at the beginning, and things have only gotten worse as a result of 1) the subsequent breakup and 2) a very long and busy week on call.
Thankfully, I'm spending this upcoming weekend in Chicago. My Mom turned 65 last December, and my brother and I decided to mark the occasion with a family getaway**. We leave at 8:30 tomorrow morning, and I can't wait to be away. I am ready to see beautiful architecture and eat tasty Top Chef winner cooking and not worry about anything. All of the problems of the real world are just going to have to wait until Monday.
*Particularly as an LGBTTQ person.
**We deferred the trip until the weather was likely to be good and until my brother's and my call schedules aligned. Bloody call.