How I Spent My Summer Vacation, An Essay.
Here is a hint: I just opened my trusty "to do" notebook and realized that the majority of tasks I listed for myself in June were not only still incomplete, but I had totally forgotten said tasks even existed. Because I don't think I even opened the notebook since the last day of school, which was somewhere around June 22. Oops.
But not really oops. I knew what I was doing. I acknowledge that, by giving myself permission to mentally check out of most extraneous adult responsibilities for two months, things would fall through the cracks. However, I decided to test the catch phrases that many have espoused (and I never believed because I am so not that girl) which state things along the lines of: don't sweat the small stuff/if it is truly important, it will get done/enjoy the moment/etc.
So- this summer, sure, I worked a little. I did a couple Today Show segments, a few Facebook Lives. I blogged a bit. I still made sure all the bills got paid on time and we had toilet paper in the house and there were healthy snacks in the pantry. I tested beauty products, read up on trends, and stayed current on all the marketing, retail and social media blogs that I love to devour daily.
You know what I did a lot, though? Planned fun activities with my daughters. Took them to the beach as often as I could, spent afternoons with them swimming, let them go to bed way later than planned. Ate too much ice cream. Skipped bath night a few times. Played a sh*tload of tennis. Cooked dinner. Worked in my garden, and learned recipes to use all the veggies we grew. Spray painted our adirondack chairs orange. Found the perfect accent pillows for our outdoor sofa. Perused 1st Dibs and Chairish endlessly in an effort to furnish our living room. Took the girls to New York City. Ventured to Quassy Amusement Park. Visited cousins in Cheshire, CT. Enjoyed every second of a visit by my cousins from Alabama. Went out for some impromptu date nights with my husband. Hosted college friends for a Sunday Funday. Planned my 20th High School reunion. Hopped in the car on a whim with a friend and went to the Elephant Trunk flea market. Learned to make pom poms. Got the shelves that had been sitting on the floor of Goldie's closet since before she was born put up on her wall. Let our full time nanny go (heartbreaking as it was) and welcomed an au pair into our home.
I finally allowed myself to realize the power that comes with being a wife and mom, and instead of hiding from it, owning it. And as such, vowed to become a more active determinant of the energy within our family. It's all a work in progress, but you gotta start somewhere, right? Right.
I spent so much time doing so many things that used to make me feel so guilty (there are emails to be replied to! segments to be pitched! content to be written! meetings to set up!), and it was awesome.
Yesterday, as I packed Alexa's snack for her first day of school, a sadness washed over me. And not for the reason I would have expected. While I- like every other mom I know, pretty much- said many times over the past few weeks "I CAN"T WAIT FOR SCHOOL TO START!"- I wanted one more week/month/year of the carefree, barely-scheduled summer situation. Even though I still have 2 more weeks before Goldie starts class, the energy in the air changes once public school begins. Everything feels different- and perhaps the reason I notice it more this year than in the past is because I am different. I guess 9 weeks floating in an alternate universe I like to call "Summer in a Suburban Beach Town" can do that to a girl.
Which is probably a good thing.
Okay- off to figure out why our Flex Spending credit card isn't working, book flights for my cousin's November wedding in Florida, pitch fall trend segments, list 10 ideas for live video broadcasts, and start that pesky 2016 Falik Family Year In Review photo album. The 5 things which I asterisked like 6 times on my list- apparently to indicate urgency.
Clearly urgency is a relative term. And that, my friends, may be the best lesson learned of all.