My Summer Away: What We Did
I have missed you. After a summer away from the blog, it’s hard to even know where to start with you. So let’s just pretend we’ve run into each other at Trader Joe’s and we haven’t seen each other for three months.
You: Micha, hey! How are you? How was your summer?
Micha: Well. It was good. I mean. It was complicated but also really restful. I mean. It was hard but also very sweet.
You: Oh, is this going to be a fun conversation or an awkwardly deep conversation in the middle of the snack food aisle?
Okay. You’re right. That’s a little too deep for the snack food aisle. I have a hard time knowing when it’s appropriate to be vulnerable. Should I, for instance, be totally honest on my first post back around here? Should I just dive straight into deep, hard issues? Or should I just show you my favorite instagrams from our trip this summer? Or should I do both? I’ll do both.
In June, one week after I took a break from blogging, I went through a miscarriage. I went in for my eight week check up and the doctor could not find the embryo on the ultrasound. It’s likely that the baby just never developed.
There is so much I want to say about that process, one that I’m grateful I didn’t feel the need to share publicly at the time. I needed some time to heal before announcing it to the world. And I’m planning to write a lot more about that loss in the weeks and months to come. In many ways I’m still processing the experience and making sense of the grief that followed in the wake of the miscarriage. I planned my break from blogging around the expected first trimester nausea, but God’s gift to me was a whole sea of time to rest and grieve and enjoy my family, without any writing obligations.
This summer revealed to me just how worn out I was after publishing and promoting the book, and I’m so grateful I felt the freedom to embrace my need for rest. There were a lot of voices in my head telling me that this break was a bad idea. But most of those voices were afraid…afraid I’d lose my voice, my influence. Most of those voices were the voices that insist I perform, the ones that want me to be a hard worker, do what’s expected of me, buckle down and produce. I’m learning how to talk reason to those voices. They’re loud but they’re beginning to respect me more and more.
So, in June, I was sad and sat on the couch watching a lot of Pride & Prejudice and Austenland and drinking a lot of fake chocolate milkshakes. But, I also celebrated my 10th anniversary with the mister by taking a grainy selfie in a mirror. (We’ll celebrate for real at the end of September.)
And then I stopped watching Austenland long enough to pack our suitcases and leave chilly, foggy San Francisco for the heat and sunscreen. I affectionately refer to our summer trips as “The Great American Grandparent Tour,” something I’m so grateful we can do as a family living far from all our dearest family members. We started in Texas, where the boys are in heaven because their cousins are older and super cool and their uncles do things like this with them, night after night in my parent’s front yard.
Then we were off with the cousins, aunts and uncles, and my parents to a cabin in New Mexico, where the world looks like this. It was dreamy.
We spent the Fourth of July going on hikes and hunting for snakes, August’s favorite creature du jour. Thankfully (in my humble opinion) we never found any.
Then it was on to the east coast, where day after day was spent like this: watching the boys swim while I read books in the sunshine. That, my friends, is my favorite way to relax.
We spent time in Maine with some dear friends who we love like family.
And thanks to Wild Kratts (my favorite children’s show on earth) the kids played Animal Rescue everyday. They even had a sign.
There was time with Chris’ parents and siblings. Lots of time in pools. And so much time being loved and taken care of by our family and friends. I was filled up enough that by the time we came back to San Francisco, I was actually able to deal with the white foggy sky in the middle of July. This was my view on my first morning back.
And sometimes in August, the sun actually did shine. Barely. But it did sometimes. And there’s no place like San Francisco for rolling down hills.
We were glad to be home. (By the way, whenever I show pics of my kids in the ocean, just keep in mind that it’s probably 60 degrees outside and that only children who grow up in San Francisco are brave enough to go into the ice cold Pacific when it’s 60 degrees outside. I certainly am not.)
Later this week, I’ll be back with the books I read this summer, linking up with Leigh Kramer (a week and a half late!) for what I was into. So grateful to be back here with you. And I can’t wait to jump back in to sharing life with you around here.