Summer blues

I have never fully adjusted to living in Texas, which is to say that I still get excited at the prospect of summer vacation. My inner Midwesterner believes that summer is the happiest of times, and so I am disappointed annually when we reach June and I remember that summer here is something to be endured.

People can be found in only two locations: the pool or their air-conditioned homes. And I even consider the pool off-limits in the afternoon because 100 degrees is so hot. The pool deck scorches tender little feet, and the kids quickly become fatigued. We spend most of our time at home, hiding from the heat. Sometimes we go so long without seeing other people that I start to feel as though I’m in some sci-fi movie where we’re the only humans left.

I’ve always liked our neighborhood because we have so many children nearby, but with kids getting older, everyone seems to travel more. Eleanor is also reaching that age where girls mainly want to play with girls and boys with boys, which narrows the pool of playmates.

Greg and I have started talking about renting a house someplace next summer for a month or so. He’s allowed to work from home, and I can work anywhere. If we’re all going to be lonely, it seems far better to be lonely in a place with better weather where we could share some new adventures. I’m even excited at the prospect of a road trip. This might be proof that the sun is frying the frontal lobe of my brain.

We’ve spent every July at home since Genevieve died. I’ve insisted on it because I can’t see the point of trying to take a vacation at a time when I know I will be emotional. But I’ve started to wonder whether the isolation of a Texas summer makes my grief significantly worse. I know that grief will always be there; my nerves start to fray every Fourth of July. How would I feel watching waves crash onto the beach or hiking through the Rockies? Certainly, fresh air couldn’t make things worse, right?

Seven days until her birthday. Eleanor is super excited this year (because of the cake, I assume), and I don’t know how to tell her not to be.

2 thoughts on “Summer blues

  1. I think half of Austin moves to Crested Butte, CO for the summer. I agree, summers are just insane. That’s why I insisted on getting a pool. And I would go north but I have to go south…. Will be thinking of you on the 15th.

  2. I wrote this nice long comment that was eaten by the internet and router gods who simply like a good game of torture.

    I have some similar feelings about summer ever since leaving the breezy, beautiful beach cities of Los Angeles. I felt, breathed and experienced my childhood over again each summer until I moved. The Midwest was definitely a summer haven in between the confusing thunderstorms and unbearable humidity. Pools-a-plenty (albeit not free AND paid for in high taxes) and “free” splash pads around every corner in Chicago. In Reno, where you’d assume high desert would mean pools everywhere, but I’m definitely struggling with these pay-per-use pools!

    All that to say. December is a time where I HATE being home. I know it’s not celebratory, but to leave is so important. Nature is so important for the soul. Being suffocated by your walls isn’t okay. And it’s not fair. To Genevieve even. Take a short trip somewhere. A day trip even. Get to where it’s bearable to be outside and just rest. Sending peace.

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