Saturday, August 1, 2020

Just Keep Swimming

Happy August everyone!  (Oh my gosh... we've actually made it to August!!!)  I think we can all agree that the past few months have been rough.  Like many, I've gone through an emotional rollercoaster between fear, sadness, disgust, anger and little glimpses of joy here and there.  And then the rollercoaster ride starts all over again.  

To be totally honest, summer hasn't been something I've been looking forward to.  For most of it, it's just felt like another thing to get through.  Summer has been hard for me to get excited about when so many of the things I look forward to every year aren't possible this year.  I've been socially distanced from everyone.  Bar Harbor's 4th of July celebration was cancelled.  And Six Flags New England is still closed.

I've been growing increasingly frustrated about everything.  I haven't been handling photos on my Facebook newsfeed of people enjoying summer very well.  I don't blame them or find fault in their choices.  I'm happy that some of my friends can salvage their summer given the crap we've all been through.  And I've made the conscious choice to stay home to protect my Mom and Nana.  But it's been really frustrating at times.

Having Eliot's sisters here last week for those few days was a really nice break.  It was the only slice of summer that I thought I'd get.  Going to Old Orchard Beach, getting Pier Fries and going mini golfing are all things that Eliot and I would do together during a "normal" summer.  It was so nice to do something that felt somewhat "normal" during all of this craziness.  I really soaked in those few hours of normalcy.

After the girls left, I found myself mourning my break.  I've been back in "quarantine" as Mom's surgery has been scheduled for mid-August and I'll be going home for a few days.  My Mom told me to continue to live my life, but I can't in good faith go to Old Orchard Beach where no one is wearing masks.  I had resigned myself to spending many more hours inside our house.  I have plenty of things to keep me busy, but it's depressing when the weather is so nice.  It's too hot for me to just sit outside though...

Thankfully, this week has been wonderful.  Eliot's best friend at work, Eric, has been telling Eliot to come use his pool whenever we wanted to.  Eliot actually went over and helped them put the pool together a few summers ago.  Eric and Heather live about 10 minutes down the road from us so it's really convenient.  We've always had the open invitation, but we've never gone over before; Eliot insisted we go over this week.  It's pretty much been in the 90's all week, so it seemed like a good time to do it.  Looking back now, I don't know why we didn't go over to their pool sooner.

This past Tuesday morning, Eliot and I got up and went over for our first swim.  Eric and Heather both work the earlier shift at Eliot's company, so they weren't home when we arrived.  Eliot walked next door to the neighbors' house and let them know it was just us next door in the pool.  (He knows them from a few weekends of dog sitting their dogs and Eric and Heather's dogs this past winter while they were all away.)

The water was a teeny bit cold at first, but it felt good in the heat.  We got in around 11 am so it was starting to get warmer out even though it was overcast.  Eliot and I floated around for a little over an hour or so before getting out.  I wouldn't let go of my foam noodle at first... Eliot was prepared to drag me out if necessary.  After promising me that we'd come back the next day, I begrudgingly got out.  Then, we both dried off and headed home so Eliot could get ready for work.

Wednesday morning, we got up and headed over to the pool again.  It was very sunny that morning and sun cast shadows over part of the pool but the water was so inviting with the sun dancing off of it.  It felt a little colder, but the water temperature was 81, only one degree cooler than the day before.  We didn't splash around as much this time, but I thoroughly enjoyed floating around on the pool noodles.  We arrived just past 11:30 and stayed until about 1:00.  Eliot almost had to drag me out this time.  We were only planning to stay until 12:30 but I didn't want to get out- and he didn't really want to either.  At 1:00, we finally got out and headed home so he could get to work.

We had plans to go swimming again on Thursday.  But after going to bed at 1:00 am and waking up at 7 am to take the trash and recycling bins to the end of the road, Eliot and I were both still exhausted.  I was fairly awake for a little bit.  I cooked myself some eggs and finished and scheduled my blog post from yesterday.  Then, I started to crash around 9:00.  I finally said screw it and went back to bed for a bit.  By the time I got back up and we packaged up orders... it was too late to go swimming.  I was a little bit disappointed, but Eliot promised me we'd try to go again on Friday.

Friday morning, we slept in a little bit.  Eventually, it was time to get up and ready.  We ended up getting over to the pool around noon.  After eating Dunkin Donuts for breakfast, Eliot and I got in the pool.  It was really hot out this time and the cold water was refreshing.  We played with a water cannon taking turns playfully blasting water at each other.  Then, Eliot found a second one for us to play with.  I sprayed mine up in the air while singing the World of Color song as the water landed around me.  Around 1:30 we finally decided it was time to leave so Eliot could work another late shift.

Going swimming this week has been such a treat.  After spending so much of my time indoors and lamenting my lack of summer fun, going to Eric and Heather's pool has truly been a godsend.  I know it's done wonders for my mental health.  It feels so good to do something that feels "normal" for the summertime.  

I'd honestly forgotten how much I loved swimming.  It's been so long since I've been able to go regularly.  My family used to go swimming almost daily when I was growing up.  My Dad's family had a camp that was about 20 minutes from our house.  Since Mom and Dad run their own business, we'd pack up and go whenever we wanted to.  I remember spending many hours floating in the lake, kayaking, paddle boating and going for long motor boat rides up and down the lake.  We all loved it and that was summer to me.  Now that I've had a taste of it, I don't ever want to go back.

Next summer, or the summer after that, Eliot and I will have a pool.  We've talked about it for a while now.  There's even a spot where the previous homeowners had a small pool.  Eliot and I plan to landscape more area to get a bigger one.  I'd love to get a 24 foot round pool to float around in.  I can see many more wonderful summer days in our future with us splashing around in the water.  °o°

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