Ogunquit 2016: Reflections and Renewal

A repost from 2016, a good reminder of the importance of vacation.

Blessed with two weeks in the “Beautiful Place by the Sea,” our respite winds down after a myriad of experiences. We laughed, walked, rested, feasted, were cultured, went nautical and squeezed in a showing of Finding Dory. I’ve been coming here since June 1982 and this place still does not disappoint. 

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In 1982, I was in search of healing. Having unexpectedly lost my mom to a sudden heart attack in 1979, twelve days past my sweet sixteenth birthday. Over the years I have enveloped every emotion in Ogunquit. Tears seem to find me easily here, as I continue to consolidate what is transformational shifts in this season of life. It seems I have fully released the hurt I was harboring from failed relationships, not fitting in, struggling to pay my $50 a week rent back when I lived and worked here in the summer, and the many fond memories I had of Valerie’s Restaurant and Piano Bar and the family that ran it.

unnamedMy daughter Kate, a five-year attendee of the famous Ogunquit Playhouse Children’s Theater Camp made it to “junior” players and performed in the ensemble of Disney’s The Jungle Book. She performed for three sold out audiences, and it was thrilling for us all. She informs me she’d like to live in Ogunquit all summer and perform in the other shows throughout the season, too. Yeah, me too. That’s a dream. How can I run my business and finance a summer in Maine for the next several years to come? Throwing it out to the universe and praying about that!

In other years up here, I overschedule and worked every day with my leadership coaching clients. This year I declared I would not have a “working vacation” and to just “be.” Five naps later, I am rested and ready for what God sends me next.

Change is imminent. I learned that dear friends/neighbors of 14 years were putting their house for sale and there would be a sign in their yard upon our return. Downsizing. We are officially the last of five original families in the neighborhood that did progressive New Year’s together and watched our kids grow up. The average age of the neighborhood is roughly 38 now. That’s how old I was when we moved in. What is next in the novel of life? We discuss downsizing and simplifying all the time. We love our neighbors and have a lovely home, but is it time for change?

I’ve been counseled to start to look for signs: what would it be like to have a small place in MD and an even smaller place in Maine? As much as I try to go elsewhere and try out new locales, the pull to this place is magnetic. It’s fun to think about the potential.

In past years, I end up doing a lot of strategic planning for The Ermi Group. Every time I tried to go there mentally, something brought me back to friends, family and our puppy (first time to the beach!) One of the inspirations I had this trip was to weave more music into my life. Articles about neuroscience and music, coach colleagues using music in their practice. I bought a package of five voice lessons starting at the end of the month to see where that takes me. unnamed-2

Well, so long beach, Marginal Way, sound of the surf, sand in my toes. I’d like to return alone for a couple of days where I can incorporate intentional mindfulness practices versus coordinating everyone’s activities like homework, food, laundry. As gratifying as domesticity is, it is not the impact I want to make in the world.

Time for change. Time to regroup. Time to get clear on what it isn’t to make room for what it is.

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