First of all, Happy September! It’s weird to think that the year is almost over. And summer really is officially over. For me, at least. I’m flying back to reality this morning which isn’t as bittersweet as I thought it would be. In some ways, I’m excited to be back in Baltimore (home?). I actually kind of missed it here- my friends, my life, my bed- all of it.
I hope everyone had a great Labor Day! I thought about posting and then realized- I was on vacation with no internet access and limited time with my family. If I spent time trying to come up with a post I’d be wasting the precious time I do have. Not worth it. Staying (mostly) unplugged for the weekend was exactly what the doctor ordered, especially as I continue to question my motivation behind blogging at this point.
This weekend was everything I needed it to be and more. I got my fill of the dockboys (most of them were gone for the summer but I had plenty of life chats with my friend/mentor Fred. When he saw me he said, “that’s my girl”), of family time, of ice cream, of all of my mom’s home-cooked food, of long walks with my parents, of friends, of kayaking/paddleboarding, and of #boatlife. I accomplished everything I wanted to do and more- not that I really had any specific plans. I treated the weekend as any other weekend on the boat and just wanted to relax and enjoy it. I didn’t run at all, I didn’t make any formal plans, and I didn’t end up working at the beach one last time. I needed a break from everything.
Yes, I got my fill of #boatlife. I said it. I didn’t dread leaving. It felt more final this time. There were no tears, I wasn’t sad that my life in Rhode Island is over, and I didn’t let it feel like “home.” I felt like I was visiting. That’s it. Because at this point, that’s all it is to me now- my vacation spot for random weekends throughout the year.
Baltimore is my home now. I was talking to someone the other night about how that’s weird to say. But it’s true. When I text my roommate as I’m leaving work, I say, “I’ll be home in 10 minutes!” I don’t say “I’ll be back at the apartment in a few.” Being in Rhode Island this weekend made me realize that I feel almost as much at home in Baltimore as I did living on the island. Except in some ways, my life in Baltimore is infinitely healthier (and therefore more enjoyable) for me because I’m not living in isolation and I’m not letting myself stay in my safe little bubble.
As I said last week, I didn’t need to go back to the boat. I thought I would when my parents booked my ticket back in July, but as the day got closer I realized I don’t need to use it as a crutch anymore. The boat will always be my special place where I grew a lot and was able to focus on my health, but it’s just a part of my past like school, swimming, and every other life experience I’ve had are.
I love Rhode Island. I always will, and I know I’ll be back there someday more permanently. It holds a lot of my favorite childhood memories and that will never change. But being back just solidified the fact that I was ready to let go. I’m no longer upset about not having my 3 months of the year on the island. It will be a fun place to go back to every summer but that’s it. Those visits will become something I cherish and look forward to rather than take for granted.
For now, though, I’m back in Baltimore until Thanksgiving. And I’m definitely not upset about it. Today is back to the grind and I’m strangely excited. I’m heading straight to my office this morning followed by a Spirit of Baltimore cruise with my company and ending the night in a real bed- I forgot how uncomfortable boat cushions are. If nothing else, this weekend really reaffirmed the fact that this is where I belong now. But I will never forget those 5 summers of boatlife, either. They make me, me.
How did you celebrate Labor Day?