Back to Reality

I understand the importance of vacation, but never as much as when I am leaving one. It's amazing what days away from reality and normal life can do for your attitude, mental and physical health, and all over well being.

It's hard to convince Americans that vacations are critical to your health. The evidence is the serious lack of vacation time most working Americans get, including my husband. I think many European countries are much better at understanding the concept and putting it into practice.

This vacation has been wonderful. There are so many fun things to write about, but the experience that stands out the most to me as I reflect on it is relationships. It was full of deepening relationships, with my husbands family and also with my kids. See on vacation, I don't have to pay bills, clean the house, return phone calls, deal with assistance programs, work, cook, clean (yeah its on there twice), do taxes, deal with normal every day life stuff. I can enjoy my family. Focus on people. Play more than I do at home, take longer eating and enjoy the food, have a glass of wine with great conversation after the kids are in bed. I can spend my time deepening my relationships.

Yesterday I was sad because I realize I won't have all this time to play with my kids once we are home. In life, there are things that have to get done. That's reality. However, vacation also serves as a great reminder that even in everyday living, I need to prioritize my life and spend my time on the things that are most important, like my children. Cleaning shouldn't be on my list twice. Vacation possess the wonderful ability to reveal to you what's most important.

As much as I love vacation, the fun adventures, the extra eating out, all the hang out time, the help with the kids, I start to miss the rhythm of our life. I've opened my Bible once for reading. My kids and I were good at the start of vacation about our devotions, and then we got lazy. Our normal rules have slipped, because you know, we are on vacation. I've put a few pounds back on because you know, we are on vacation. Its been a fun break from our normal rhythms, but I'm starting to feel disconnected to myself. I haven't spent any time centering myself, grounding myself in faith, giving myself again every day to God. Not doing that on vacation has taught me how much I depend on God to get me through every day. I have missed that on vacation.

(sigh)...I am going to miss my Texas family. I selfishly wish life looked a little different. That we lived closer or vise versa. That all of our family wasn't so far away. That we could do more normal life together instead of just vacation. I am going to miss the sunshine, but my kids are excited again to play in the snow.

And for all that I am going to miss, I can not wait to see my husband. I haven't felt whole in two weeks. My kids and I are all sad to leave and excited to go home at the same time. Its hard to have mixed emotions, which means three tired kids who are emotionally confused should make us really fun to sit next too on the plane. Hope you're not going to MN today on AA at 1030am. That cranky lady who just yelled at her kids isn't me. I promise. I never yell at my kids. *wink*