I love my home, I really do. I enjoy spending time here. In the summer, we like to have weekend “staycations” by our pool. But from time to time, I feel the pull to get away. I enjoy traveling, and the adventure of exploring new places. Most of all, I enjoy and appreciate the “escapes from reality.” In an earlier post, I proclaimed the virtues of having alone time and “me days”, which are vital to our personal sanity. The getaways I’m talking about here are the ones we do with our immediate family members or close friends, and are just as important to our mental, emotional and even physical well-being.
Only by packing our bags and leaving the house and the immediate area do we truly take a break from day-to-day responsibilities. When we are away, we aren’t working, doing home chores, taking care of others, or even returning phone calls. We are simply, and vitally, enjoying time with each other, having fun, and relaxing. Both my husband and son are more home-bodies than I am… and yet they too recognize the value of escapes (well, that is once I’ve actually gotten them out the door and on the road!).
These getaways don’t have to be extravagant 10-day vacations to foreign lands (as lovely as that sounds!). Brief weekend breaks can be just as therapeutic. This weekend my boys and I went camping in Vermont. We were only a little over 3 hours from home. But sitting by a campfire, hearing nothing but a babbling brook, the crackle of the fire and the rustle of the trees, we may as well have been a world away. Our biggest decision that night was when to start making the s’mores. Even our cell phones took most of the weekend off, as signals were sporadic at best.
We enjoyed amazing scenery, took lots of photos, explored a streambed, and when Mother Nature changed our plans for a bike ride, the three of us went to a matinee movie. I don’t remember the last time all three of us just spent a Saturday afternoon together seeing a fun movie. Today before heading home we rode an antique Merry-Go-Round and ate decadent ice cream — each of us acting like big kids.
“Escapes from reality” put us back in touch with ourselves and each other. We realize we still like each other, and can have conversations without interruptions by the phone, TV and video games. We are reminded of the important things in life (which aren’t things), and we get relaxed and energized at the same time.
Of course, returning home is always nice – to be back in familiar surroundings and our own beds is lovely. Even better, I return home feeling more at peace, with great stories to tell, and a refreshed mind and body ready for re-entry into reality.