Monday, September 21, 2009

The Hardest Part About Going on Vacation. . .

is coming home.


End of sentence.

Erik, the boys, my mom, and I spent the end of last week and the weekend at a resort in Destin. We had an amazing time. Playing with the boys, feeling their excitement, their enthusiasm, their utter joy made me feel young and free and to use a very surfacey word ~ happy. I had the best time. We ate at restaurants where the ocean breeze blew through our hair. We laughed out loud. Erik and I went out on two, count them, two, romantic dates in one week! And, on one of those dates I felt his heart, his soul as he talked to me, so deeply that I realized once again what it means to "be one." I got to shop with my mom, watch a few good football games, go canoeing for the first time, swim in a gorgeous pool with mosaic frogs spitting water on my head :-), take a few leisurely strolls oceanside, and listen to my boys howl with laughter. It was wonderful ~ everything that a vacation should be.

But, unfortunately, now it is over.

And, my heart is sad.

About an hour ago, I looked over at the computer and a beach picture that I downloaded last night flashed up as part of our screen saver. And, as my eyes fell upon the image, I literally felt my heart drop and my tummy churn. A heaviness and a strange longing came over me. What I wouldn't give for another day, just one. more. day! As a family we have so many vacations to look forward to, and I thought about that a lot as I took in the last few days. These fun vacations of chasing little boys in the sun will not be forever. We are so blessed to be enjoying them now! But, this vacation in many ways was special. The last six months have been, for a lack of a better word, serious. They have been hard and sad, difficult and busy, painful and overwhelming. They have ushered a new season into my husband's life and mine and the boys' lives as well. And, the warm ocean air was like a healing balm to our mending hearts.

But, yesterday we had to come home.

And, it has been more difficult than I ever imagined it would be.
Vacations, true vacations, are funny things, really. Because when you are away, you virtually forget that your other life, your real life, even exists. You live in the moment. You make plans no further than an hour or two in advance. You feel carefree ~ laughter comes easy, as well as, tears.
And, then upon returning home, you are reminded, abruptly ~ I might add, that real life does very much exist, and it is depending on you. And, quickly we are once again swept up into the ordinary, everyday life that we live.

This morning I woke up at five to a to do list so big I didn't even take the time to sit down and write it. I just dove in head first and completely overwhelmed. I have mountains of laundry, an entire mountain chain, actually. My mac isn't working, and our PC is slowing dying. I have bills to pay and so many thank you notes to write that I am scared to start. I sent Joshua to school only to realize at 10:00 that I forgot to put his spelling and his speech notebook in his backpack. I have phone calls to make, moms in touch meetings to begin, checks to order (how did I let myself run out completely before I reordered??), bags upon bags to go through and put away, counters full of clutter to put away, grocery shopping to do, a dog to pick up at the vet, and dinner to plan and make. Not to mention four children to diaper, nurse, feed, and help do homework. So, I'm not sure what is more difficult the back to life, back to reality aspect of being home or the inner longing to be alone with the ones I love most with no responsibilities except to fill our days with as much sun and fun as is possible in 24 hours.

Erik will have to work late tonight in order to catch up on the days that he missed. And, he has college Bible study on Wednesday night, a Jr. College game on Thursday night, a high school game on Friday night, and a duathalon on Saturday. We are back to the busyness that is our life in this sweet little town in which we live.

I just think that the older I get the more I appreciate the good times and, perhaps, the bad as well. And, I am realizing that things will never be perfect, and for a perfectionist that is a big realization. But, somehow, magically, they appear perfect in hindsight, perfectly sweet memories created and woven together by a good and loving God. And, I can't wait to write about them. As soon as my crazy life and my crazy PC give me the opportunity to do so!


Sarah said...

Erin, here is the wisest thing I've ever said to you:

No amount of cleaning, laundry, or cooking can make up for bad hair. You, my friend, have amazing hair. So in the end, all will be okay.

Love you :)

Malisa @ My Lil' Corner of the World said...

Looks and sounds like you had a great time. Vacations are so fun and I totally agree, it's SO hard to return to your regularly scheduled life without longing for those vacation days.

Bobbie said...

Sister, you and I are going through the same things. I love the life I left, but the re-entry is rough.

deana b said...

I am so glad you all had such a wonderful time. For what it is worth, you were missed here! But I have to make comment on how extremely impressed I was at the cleanliness of your home when I went by there. When we leave the house, as hard as I try not to, I usually leave it a wreck. Yours was clutter-free, clean. I was so impressed. You are obviously more together than you think friend!!!

Debi said...

Loved your's the truth girl. Come on over an be a Soul Sista!


in a world surrounded by men said...

Sounds like a great get-away and what a beautiful picture!

Relax, you have all the time in the world to check things off your to-do list.

Monkey Momma said...

Erin, I had our second child 10 weeks ago. Four weeks after that we went on vacation, me, my husband, our two year old and our newborn, down to Galveston. It was quite possibly the worst vacation ever. I was super sleep deprived, hormonal, patience was completely absent with our toddler, and my poor husband trying to squeak fun at any opportunity while I rained on his parade. I actually breathed a sigh of relief when we came home to the mountains of laundry, grocery shopping, and a regular routine. It was a point in my life that I didn't need escape, I needed boring, grounded, everyday life.

Looking back, I know a lot of it was the overwhelmingness of adding a second child to the mix (waaay harder than anyone admits!), but a lot of it was my attitude. Thank you for reminding me that time does fly too quickly. I see my two boys growing at warp speed and already wish I could go back to that vacation and have a "do-over".

My photo
Hi! I live in a sweet country home overflowing with love, laughter, and little ones. I have been blessed to journey these days beside a man that I love, respect, and admire. He is my soul-mate and best friend. Together we are seeking to raise our seven children to be lovers of God, to be wise and discerning, and to be all that our sweet God created them to be. I am in the goldfish and cheerio stage of life, but I am keenly aware that these days are slipping right through my hands. This blog is my attempt to keep our memories safe for years to come.


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