The air just seems crisper…can you feel it? It is a sweet reminder that the heat doesn’t last forever. I am not complaining, our windows have been open all week, but it is a sobering reminder that the summer doesn’t last forever either.
This past spring season was not an easy season for my family. It was saturated with health issues and disappointments. I remember sitting in a hospital bed and crying out that I just wanted to be home with my family enjoying my porch. I wasn’t dying to get to work…or read Facebook…or sit at my desk. I wanted to be enjoying my home, my daughter, my friends and giving of myself as much as possible. So when I was back in action, at the beginning of June, I set goals for the summer season. I wanted to dig deep and feel the sticky sand of summer squeeze through my fingers. Sure I had business goals, with six weeks of sickness I was certainly behind, but more importantly I wanted to soak in as much sun as possible, spend time with friends and family and take in those long sweaty little kid hugs as much as possible.
Earlier this week, I took the afternoon off and headed to Matapeake Beach with my family. We crammed the days necessities into the car and headed to the bay. Within minutes of our arrival Adalynn tiptoed on the hot sand and walked into the bay without hesitation. She was so proud of herself and so was I. We found sea glass, had a picnic with her GG and later headed to a pier to stuff ourselves with seafood. We returned that night with sandy toes and happy hearts.
The following day my sweet friend Nicolle brought her dumplings over for an impromtu dip in the pool. It was 5:00 and we were chatting on the phone about work and life and I thought…this is silly…let’s let the kids play and we can catch up in person. By the end of the night, the kids were soaked to the bone, overly tired, and snuggling on the couch together with popsicles while watching movies. And I caught myself wondering again why this week hadn’t happened every week this summer. I wasn’t missing work, I wasn’t missing anything. And to just say that time was flying was clearly just an excuse.
So this morning, when I came across that list I had compiled with such clarity in June and looked at the calendar I could barely catch my breath that it read August. And I was ashamed to see I have far more business goals achieved than personal. It literally made my heart sad. That crisp air is the feeling of time flying by me, of not the present and purposeful living of what makes life life.
I don’t buy the whole time flies when you are having fun. I think back to my own childhood and remember long and I mean really long summer days. Time did not fly. Those days where my sister and I were packed into a car for a road trip with a bag of candy courtesy of our grandfather. Those were the nights where we would sit under the stars with our best friends and did that…just sit. And time did not fly this week either. It stood still. On this Friday I can look back at a truly full week. And I am convinced it is because I was present, intentional and putting the stuff that matters at the forefront.
How do we I find so much clarity on what is important in a hospital bed, but not while looking at my own family? I don’t get it, but I don’t want to do it any more. I want those long summer days and I am set on finding them regardless of never-ending goals and to-do lists. I want to breathe in that humid air, listen to those sweet giggles and splashing in the pool and not be itching to “accomplish” one more thing. I want to stop saying and stop using the excuse that “time is flying”.
So here is my challenge to myself…and a challenge for you as well. I am making 5 goals for August to make those long, meaningful and purposeful summer days.
- Take REAL Time Off- We actually have TWO beach trips planned for this month It will be our longest family vacation time ever and it is much needed. I plan on leaving my phone at the beach house reading books, napping, star gazing and staying up late with family. Time off is key to recharge and get my head out of the to-do list swamp.
- Take our morning and evening routine outside and away- When you sleep and live in the same place you work, your world can seem very small, so I am going to take my family outside and away from that aforementioned swamp… Skeeters..please stay away.
- Have a porch party- Wine, friends and cramming on the porch for games, laughs and long conversation. Need I say more.
- Go on a date with my hubby on the bay with LOTS of crabs. We typically do this for my birthday, and it always kicks off the summer, but this year, it fell by the wayside for not so great reasons. As much as I need to soak in summer…our marriage needs that rest and attention too and a day with my hubby and Old Bay covered fingers sounds delightful.
- Learn five constellations- This sounds silly, but as much stargazing as I have done, I have never actually known but maybe one constellation. So I am going to learn five. And I can’t wait.
And there it is. I encourage you to make the most out of this month too. Stop using the “time is flying” excuse; it is just waiting for you to give it a reason to slow down…now go and make it.