I took a break from writing for about 2 months. No blogs. No books. No poetry. Nothing. I just went dark. I didn’t feel like I had anything positive to say and I didn’t want to junk up the world with negativity. And I didn’t pull my trusty laptop out today because of a resolution. There is no “New Year, New You” stuff going on in my head. I actually really dislike resolutions. Especially at the beginning of the year. I try not to start anything at the beginning of anything. I like to start new exercise programs on a Wednesday. I like to start new food choices on a Friday. I don’t like to wait for the beginning of the week or the beginning of the month, or the beginning of the year. I think when you feel the nudge of life telling you to do something, you should do it right away. I think planning for things just turns into more procrastination than I need, because if I’m being totally honest, I can be really good at procrastination. I charged my laptop for 4 days while I was at the beach. I knew that once I put my feet in the sand, I would feel more like myself. I would feel like I had something to offer the world again aside from Seasonal Depression and negativity. But my feet were so deep in the sand that I couldn’t find the time to write there either. I just soaked up every grain my feet stepped on. I felt every drop of water that I could. I inhaled every bit of salty air my lungs could hold, and even though the sun was barely shining, the sunshine of a Florida beach makes the winter sunshine of the mountains seem like a cloudy day. I know I’m not the only one who feels like their soul is settled at the beach. I’m sure that’s why there are so many people flocking South for the winter. I had to choke back tears as I put my car in drive. I always joke that leaving the beach is like a tough breakup. Incidentally, I had a kind of break up almost as soon as I got back from the beach, and I don’t think it hurt my soul as much as leaving Florida. My heart hurt a bit from the kind of break up. But it hurt the way your heart hurts when you lose a best friend, because he was more my friend than a boyfriend, but he was that stupid, stupid friend who just couldn’t be a decent human being long enough to make you feel like it was worth it. That kind of heartbreak heals pretty quickly. At least it does for me. But the soul breaking pain of leaving the beach…. my soul is still sick and longing to go back. Going to the beach just reminds me how much I hate having responsibilities. I should be used to them by now because I’ve had responsibilities since I was 17, and most days, I accept that my life is my life. Until I am on a beach with my feet in the sand. And then I am 100% aware of the unfairness of life. So, I made up my mind (again) that I will very soon, be back at a beach, permanently. Not a resolution. A solution to soothe my tortured soul. The beach is where I find peace. It doesn’t matter how many times my heart has been broken. How much loss I’ve suffered. How many times I’ve tripped, fallen, stumbled or just plain fucked up, the beach is not only forgiving of it all, it is like that fuzzy blanket wrapped around an infant. It’s security. It’s compassion. It’s understanding. It’s forgiving. It’s giving. But most of all, it’s always there. And even though it may not be the same beach each time, and I may not be the same person each time, we are always friends.
So now I am home, back in Knoxville, where will I hang my proverbial hat for the next couple years while raising my last kid and even though I love to see the fog rising off the mountaintops, I can’t wait until I can see the sun rising off the ocean again.