Tuesday, June 29, 2010


I have a love/hate relationship with vacation. About a week before I go, I enjoy a dreamy anticipation of leisure, not cooking or cleaning, and a relaxing change of pace from my regular life. A few days before we leave, I begin making lists, what feels like hundreds of lists, so I won't forget anything. Then there is the race to keep up with the laundry, and finally packing suitcases, bins and food for the trip.

While I'm packing, I become grouchy about how much work it takes to get a family of four into the van and on the road. I'm usually cleaning my house at the same time so I don't come home to a mess, and the combination of packing and cleaning is enough to make me reconsider my vacation in the first place.

I also notice how comfortable my bed is before going away, and how good my coffee tastes because I make it exactly how I like it for myself, and for some reason I start to feel anxious about leaving. I think I have to fight against this, or I'll become a lonely old woman who never goes anywhere or does anything because it's easier just to stay in my house.

Once we are on the road, I will begin to unwind, and everything will be good again. I could just do without these two days right before I leave. I don't like any state of limbo, and preparing to go away is the worst kind of waiting time. I'm anxious to just get going, while still feeling the appealing draw of my own home and surroundings.

We all need change or we become bored and settled. Mixing it up is good for me, even if I don't always realize it. I feel off-kilter without my laptop, as I'm still waiting to hear if anything can be recovered on my crashed hard drive. For seven years I've been doing a monthly newsletter for my rubbber stamping home business on the first of the month, and I can't for July because my contact lists have been erased at worst, and are unavailable to me at best.

It's all part of life. Holding loosely to things I depend on is hard work. It's worth the effort because it will keep me more aware of the things that really matter in my life, and let go of the rest, but it's a draining process. I have much to learn and a long way to grow in the area of letting go, and not being controlled by outside influences. I think we all do.

Tomorrow we are driving nine hours to Jason's family's cabin. We didn't think the cabin was going to fit into our summer plans this year, but over the winter the kids began talking about fishing, canoe rides and smores at the cabin, and we looked at each other, went back to our joint calendars, and found a way to squeeze in this trip. We all love it there; wide-open days to fill with books, walks, naps, junk food and swimming in the icy cold lake on a hot day.

We just need to get there first. I'm surprised by this realization of the yin/yang process in order to go on vacation. I think it has always been there, but I didn't identify it before. We've gone to BC so many times, it should be old hat by now, and to some degree it is, but the accompanying emotions are always there. It's always worth it to go. It helps to recognize the ups and downs and understand that they go with the territory of going away from my comfort zone for a week.

I'll do my best to piggyback wireless internet from the neighbours while I'm away, but since we don't have cell coverage or our own internet connection at the cabin, I may not be able to do blog posts from Thursday to Tuesday. In a way it's refreshing to unplug for a few short days and not be wirelessly connected to the rest of the world. It's sort of a forced electronic break. But on the other hand, I jump out of bed each morning looking forward to writing these posts, and I love hearing from all of you about where my writing intersects with your life and experiences. Thank you for reading, and for sharing your lives with me.


  1. you are welcome........don't forget to take the time to smell the roses is too short for lists......what will I put on your gravestone........HER HOUSE WAS ALWAYS CLEAN!...nope, would rather put....SHE LED A HAPPY AND FULFILLED LIFE, TOOK TIME TO APPRECIATE LIFE AND TAUGHT THE REST OF US HOW TO DO THE SAME.......

  2. Thanks, Mel! Have a good start to your summer, and I like that tombstone inscription!