Thursday, July 28, 2011

What's Real: Vacation Edition

I took a class my senior year in high school called Human Nature. It focused on various esoteric topics, usually based on one question posed to us by our teacher, and then opening it up for discussion amongst all the 17 and 18 year olds in the room. Those are some brave teachers who want to listen to teenagers with one foot out the door into the "real world" discuss how we know what is real and what is not! I adored my teacher and most of my classmates in that particular class, and sitting and being able to open up my big mouth and gab about what it means to be a human being, and what it means to understand one another....well, it was right up my alley!

I have been thinking about Mr. D and that class for the last few days as my week long vacation with Super Husband and N was coming to an end. It was really a fantastic week. We made sure to wring every drop of vacation out of each day. We visited my extended family 300 miles away, stayed on their enormous and beautiful potato farm, ate too much, told stories about my Grammie (N carries her name proudly in the middle), watched a lone beaver swim back and forth across the pond (building his dream house, no doubt, while my Uncle shakes his fist), played bocce, drank wine, laughed, and sat in silence under a sky that is 12 times bigger than ours at home. We also came home to a heat wave that chased us out of the house and to a friends camp almost 2 hours away for our remaining days before we resumed our regular schedule. We watched N grow braver each time she got in the lake with her friends, sitting down, laying down, kicking those legs, and eventually dunking her head. We played cribbage, grilled, made breakfast, Super Husband even got to sail.

It was all so....REAL. Yes, I know, so are my dishes, laundry, daycare costs, and paycheck. Those are all part of our life, but they aren't life. I think that we do a good job as a family trying to stay ahead of those feelings, and that slippery slope of being consumed by our daily tasks and our obligations, but being reminded in such an all-consuming way was incredibly refreshing, and so relaxing. So needed. So welcome.

I ended my vacation having dinner with one of my oldest and dearest friends. We sat outside on a patio, drinking white wine, eating sushi, and catching up. One of my favorite things about my time with B is that we catch up pretty quickly (kids, husbands, classes, jobs, vacations, siblings, etc) and our conversations inevitably end up wandering towards the big LIFE topics. The real ones. The ones that don't have answers, and that might not make any sense to anyone else. We also talk about wishing we could get together more, and always promise to make it happen (sometimes we do, sometimes we don't....the ebbs and flows) and also blather on about how much we love and appreciate one another and how we wish we said it more. And the scattered emails, text messages, and voicemails trying to find a time that works for both of us do not go unnoticed, they are enough for me until we hit the jackpot and are able to sit outside drinking wine, eating sushi, and talking about what it all means. That's real.

I think I should also mention that the lovely B was also in this Human Nature class with me our senior year. Mr. D would love to know the conversations continue.

I think my point here is that I learn more each day how to shape my own reality. I want to remember to soak it all up, to keep my vacation mentality (but not the vacation diet, I need to start running off the extra glasses of wine and the trips to Burger Boy), and keep showing N what's real, and what's important. 

I will be back soon to update on The List progress....or is it lack thereof? We will see! 


  1. This post hit home in so many ways... I have also been thinking about our Human Nature class (and Mr. D of course)lately, you captured the essence of the class and our lively discussion beautifully. ~KLFontaine

  2. I loved that class! it was such a great way to go out too. We had a good group. Thank you for commenting, Kate! I hope you are feeling good!