July ended on a high note with nine days in California visiting my son and his family. We enjoyed being a part of their daily activities ~ a trip to the farmers' market, a field trip with our grandson's preschool, dinner cooked on the grill, trips to Home Depot, and my granddaughter's birthday party with friends and family. Ken and I had lunch with friends one afternoon. We enjoyed walks through local downtown areas and saw the ocean from Santa Cruz.
I had the first few days of August at home and then headed to the woods of Maine for a week of "quilt camp." It was officially a retreat, but family style meals in the lodge and sewing in the barn and stitching on the porch felt so much like camp that the nickname stuck. I took with me quilts in various stages of completion so had plenty to do in my free time. I slept great and even read an entire novel, something I have not done in a long time.
I returned home to squeeze every minute out of the days I had left before I had to be back at school. I sewed every day and thought I had a pretty good handle on household organization.
Then I went into school one day near the end of the fourth week of August. I had to unpack everything and get the room set up, and working at it for 28 hours before the first workshop day was barely enough. I was unwilling to give up any more of my summer....
And the struggle continues as I fight to have time for life outside school. I have claimed weekends as my own to sew, cook, work on projects at home, and enjoy the occasional day with family. I learned last winter that I will never get caught up with schoolwork, and this year there is twice the workload with a new online data collection/reporting system. The learning curve is steep and deadlines are always looming.
I am coming to terms with what is my life. Not much matches the plans I had. I spent my first thirty years trying to please others and denying many of my true feelings. I spent the next thirty years coming to terms with who I am and realizing that whatever I do I can't please everyone. Sadly, it's nonsense to think that I will be happy if I am true to myself ~ I have lost friends and many relationships have shifted because not everyone appreciates who I really am. The hardest losses are some of the people I love the most.
Tonight the thought came to me that I am living the wrong life. This isn't who I want to be or what I want to be doing. I don't know what to do other than put one foot in front of the other and hope that tomorrow is a better day. I don't know what the next thirty years will hold, but I do know that the journey continues....