I read somewhere once that “September is the new January.” Simple. Cute. So trite. Then I saw it again right before Labor Day weekend. Funny how sometimes you get hit by something at the right place-right time.
I know I’m late to the party on this concept. Historically, I have spent so much time grasping at the last rays of summer that I never saw, or allowed myself to see, the possibility of using “back-to-school” as a time to reframe, reset, refresh, reboot. Instead of planning, I would be lamenting. Or hiding. You see, my birthday falls right in there, (it was last week, actually) and I usually get all weird and introspective and try to hide behind a chair so no one looks at me or talks about it.
But, like I’ve been saying. Not this time around. Nope. Why??? Oh, I think you know why. Because: WE. SHOW. UP.
CONFESSION: This summer, I pretty much ate and drank whatever I wanted.
These days, I’m paying for it. While I regret just about nothing about this awesome summer, that frivolity is one thing that pains me. Literally and figuratively. I know…we all get off track, we all give in to indulgences…we all get weird around cookies. But, I seriously used myself this summer. And then I let myself get away with it. I was my own bad boyfriend.
I won’t lie: gluttony is super fun. And it’s easy to talk yourself into. As summer came into focus, I was working out religiously, my health was stable and after all, it was summer. “Can’t we just let go of the rules a little bit?” I thought.
Clearly, I forgot how far I have come.
I was in the womb the first time I came to Seven Mile Island in New Jersey. And I’ve come back every summer, ever since. Except maybe one when I lived in Texas, if I’m remembering correctly.
When I was a little girl, my mom’s whole side of the family would come – my grandparents and all their offspring: aunts, uncles, cousins, all of us packed into one house. Sometimes for as long as three weeks.
Ironically, Adrian grew up coming here as well. Oh, how I love to sit around imagining that we may have met at the arcade as kids.
Coming here feels like coming home. Even the sulphury smell of the marsh when we drive over the bridge triggers instantaneous relaxation. The seagulls cawing, the wind blowing, the sun shining, the bustle of shoppers and diners making their way down 96th Street.