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  • Writer's pictureEsther Brownwood

When Change Goes On Vacation



va·​ca·​tion vā-ˈkā-shən


: a period spent away from home or business in travel or recreation

had a restful vacation at the beach


a: a scheduled period during which activity (as of a court or school) is suspended

b: a period of exemption from work granted to an employee


: a respite or a time of respite from something : intermission


: an act or an instance of vacating


vacationed; vacationing vā-ˈkā-sh(ə-)niŋ

: to take or spend a vacation

vacationed at the shore

Hello Friend,

I picked vacation as this month’s topic because it’s the time of year where many people have the opportunity for a little change of pace.

To me, summer can feel like a sweltering pool of nothingness. I always feel like “Oh, summer’s coming, I’ll have so much time!” Yet the truth is that it often passes me by in the blink of an eye. I get so stuck in the anticipation of experiencing things, going out, living life, that somehow the heat, combined with the added freedom makes it all pass before I’ve even had the chance to do anything.

As a kid, there was nothing I was more excited about than the summer break. Being able to relax and sleep in as long as I could was the best! However, with freedom also comes the absence of structure. I’ve noticed in my life that without structure, I tend to fall apart.

I make so many plans in my head about things I’d like to do, yet when the time comes I am paralyzed by exhaustion, and feel like I don’t want to do anything.

Without the stability of school, a full-time job, or other regularly scheduled events, it’s very easy to get lost in the flexibility of nothingness.

The freedom in not having things you have to do can be both liberating and confining in its own way.

This state is something you don’t even realize until you get a glimpse from the outside. Until you leave your circumstances and see another way.

It’s hard to change your ways if you can’t recognize them. That’s why a break from your regular environment, be that a vacation, a summer camp, or a day trip to a nearby area can make all the difference in the world.

You return back to your life with fresh eyes, with a perspective changed from external experiences. And sure, you might fall back into the same patterns as before, but there is a possibility that you might not!

A vacation can give you a much needed change of pace. You get to experience life in ways that you usually don’t. Generally without the experiences and stresses of daily life.

Of course, vacations come with some difficulties as well: #1. Planning a trip takes an incredible amount of energy.

#2. You don’t magically change as a person, just because you’re in a different place.

Number one is one I discovered as an adult. It’s a sad truth that I hope you live a long time before learning.

Number two is something I learned early on in my life.

You see, I too once had a dream of escaping all the annoyances and painful dynamics of myself and my family. Of being in a world where we were suddenly different and all the baggage of the past couldn’t touch us. Well… I’m sorry to say that that bubble burst right in my face.

Being in a different place does not inherently change who you are, the annoying habits you have, or the relationships with the people you go with.

It can help to shift these things for the better, or worse, but that’s because of the new perspective that being out of your day-to-day comfort zone brings you.

We can allow these experiences to help shift our lives into something we feel less of a need to escape from, through witnessing something different.

Camp was one of these eye-opening experiences for me. Spending that time away from home in a fully structured environment showed me that there are places where I can thrive. It inspires me to hold onto my vision and create more structure in my daily life.

This summer, I genuinely hope you have a great vacation (or more!) and can leave your worries behind! I also hope that being away shows you the things you’re missing in your life, and gives you the power to implement them!

Thank you for reading, I’ll see you next month! Enjoy these last few weeks of summer, and don’t forget: I love you.

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