Guest Blog Post by: Rebecca Gregerson
Those moments. They seem to hit out of nowhere right? Everything is in a rhythm…a schedule we’ve created and follow to the letter and then BAM…something changes. It can be something as simple as a planned vacation or as complex as a hospital stay, but it throws things off either way. Suddenly you have to be away from your responsibilities and put them into someone else’s hands. It’s stressful and tedious to try and communicate everything you do to keep things well managed.
One afternoon on the way home from my son’s soccer game, I got the kind of call that will bring you to your knees. Sister…accident…dead. A moment of horror…one that you can never emotionally prepare for and one almost everyone can relate to in some way. When things like this happen, it seems like the universe should just pause for a while to let us deal with everything. But it doesn’t. As you absorb the reality of the situation and prepare to face the most traumatic days of your life, you don’t get to walk away from your responsibilities.
We happen to live across the country from our extended family…tricky in times like these. My loving husband jumped in and started planning…. Emergency flights, airport pickup, suitcases, email the school, arrange someone there to take our small children as the family mourned, arrange someone here to watch out pets, etc, etc, etc. As grateful as I was for his actions…those things only scratched the surface of what needed to be done.
It was a relief that his family stepped in to keep the kids slightly sheltered from all of the sadness and grief. The glitch was that they’ve never watched them before. They didn’t know what they eat, if they have allergies, if they slept with a lovey, what size diapers they wore, what would comfort them if they were missing us. There are so many important aspects of their daily routine that they were unaware of.
Great…someone could stay here and take care of our pets. Did they know where the food was…the waste bags…the leash? Did they know that Pedro will jump over the front rail and run off if you leave the door open? Of course not. It was still very hot where we live and all the plants would need to be watered…inside and out. Would they locate all of them…even the ones outside of the gate that I worked for two years to get to bloom? I was expecting deliveries. Would they know where the driver usually leaves them so they could check and the packages wouldn’t be stolen?
As I worked through phone calls and tears, I frantically started to compile lists for all of the “helpers”. Admittedly, I can easily be categorized as a control freak or Type A. In this extreme situation, a lot of people would just allow the details to get figured out one way or another. For me, though, it’s been a way of life when I’m preparing to be gone for any occasion. Quite honestly, I don’t want the balls dropped.
My reason?? It creates even more work and stress than I already have. Who needs that??
It’s a huge pain to have to retrain your dog not to jump up on the sofa because the pet sitter let him do it…or to get the scratched leather of said sofa repaired for that matter. It’s a lot of money and work to replace the plants that bring life to your home after they wilted from lack of water. It causes stress when you walk into a disheveled home environment after long hours of travel time.
This incident and many others I’ve experienced led me to consider a better system. If you can be organized, you can avoid so much of this last minute scrambling. The reality is, however, that so most of us aren’t. All too often, we fly by the seat of our pants and live re-actively, rather than proactively. It doesn’t mean we’re not organized, it just means that a more efficient way hasn’t been introduced to us.
Being a long time mamapreneur, I saw something missing and had to take action. I created app that helps you plan in advance so you can be perfectly prepared to head out at a moment’s notice. Once downloaded, you are prompted to create lists for various responsibilities that you have…children, pets, home care, or something completely custom. We ask you all the details so you can input the info once and edit it when necessary. Your lists are documented and saved so that you can invite someone from your contacts to step in and be your proxy any time…giving them access to those lists for the date/s you’ll be gone and ensuring they have all the info they need to keep everything progressing smoothly in your absence.
My sister’s passing was one of so many countless events in my life where a tool like this would have alleviated significant stress. We juggle so much in life and we’re pretty darn amazing at it. When the unexpected comes, “one less thing” to do could make all the difference.
About the author:
Rebecca Gregerson is a busy entrepreneur who runs, Pieces, an art and decor business and a brand new organizational app called My Proxy Fox. She is always bursting with new ideas and loves finding creative ways to bring them to life. Outside of chasing her career dreams, her heart belongs to her super supportive and all around awesome husband, two spunky and fabulous littles, and two of the sweetest fur babies in town.