On a Saturday morning I found myself with arms and mind overflowing as I hurried my girls into the car for a little road trip. Blankets and snacks and books and gift bags somehow made it into the car along with my people, and we were off.

The first half of our drive was fairly peaceful, with the girls glued to tablets and books and me tuned into the podcast episodes I’d missed during the week. We arrived at the party, mingled with family and friends, ate some cake, and played with the birthday girl. Then it was time to hit the road again.

The sun slipped behind the horizon sooner than I expected, and my girls lost interest in every single thing they’d brought along sooner than I hoped. Soon, I was not just sleepy but irritated and desperate for solutions to both situations. Realizing my daughters needed my earbuds to hear and watch a movie together, I reached for my purse in the passenger seat.

Oh, that’s right. My purse hit the floor when I hit the speedbump on my looking-for-Starbucks detour a while back.

With my eyes on the road, I leaned over and waved my hand around in an attempt to grab my purse, but I couldn’t stretch far enough. Completely annoyed with everything in the world by now, I sped up the ramp of the next exit I spotted. I paused at the stop sign just long enough to put the car in park, check for oncoming traffic (there was none; it was a deserted exit), unbuckle and grab my purse. I pulled my earbuds out of their little pocket, tossed them to my girls in the back seat, and got back on the road.

Heaving a big sigh, I told myself to simmer down. We’d be home soon enough. After all, that stop had probably only cost us about thirty seconds. What difference could thirty seconds make?

To find out what difference that thirty seconds made, join me over at (in)courage.

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