I just spent two wonderful weeks with family and friends in Vermont. As busy as a summer camp, we had guests flowing in and out of the doors of our rental house on a strict schedule, devised by my father, a former school principal.
Somehow, it all came together, and we managed to spend quality time with everyone, from my 3-year old godson to my teenage nieces, my parent’s friends from when they were teachers to my high school pal, Moira. We went on hikes, cooked dinners, shopped the local farmer’s market, and stayed up looking for shooting stars. It was a vacation to beat all others.
And yet, near the end of our time, I began to get itchy for time to myself. Finally, I begged off going on a hike with my husband and our friend Rachel, told my parents to go site-seeing without me, and took a day off from everyone to just be quiet. Sitting upstairs under the eaves, hearing the rain patter on the garden below, I was transported back to another time when I chose to stay behind, and found a rare peace. That story became “Serving Solitude.”
Please read it and share with me your own experiences of finding space for yourself, or think about how you can do this in the future. How can you be alone with yourself? What do you need to turn off or leave behind? Or what do you have to let go ahead without you?