I’ve been on vacation this week.  I never want to go home.  We’re staying in Alabama along the Gulf of Mexico, and every day I wake up, put on one of my various bathing suits, and sit on the deck of the beach house, watching the waves roll in while I drink my coffee and smoke my-cig.  Today I am blogging next to the Gulf.  Not too bad.  It’s a much better view than I have a home – one reason I don’t want to go back.  

Time just goes slower here.  I stay up late, but I wake up much earlier than I do at home.  I guess I’m not always thrilled or even barely motivated to start my day at home.  Here I am.

My whole family is here, parents, aunts, uncles, cousins, kids…there are a lot of people with a lot of different personalities, but we’ve all managed to refrain from killing each other.  I think mostly because there are always some adults floating around in the pool at the beach house with the kids.  Andy and I spend a lot of time in the gulf, smashing into the giant waves that roll in, splashing each other.  Taking long, handheld walks along the beach.  This is the most fun I’ve had in a long time.  I think Andy and I needed this.  I feel we both have let go a lot since getting here…I can feel our connection growing stronger, reviving.  We definitely needed some alone time in paradise.

I’ve really been able to let go here…I don’t really think about the worries I think about on a daily basis at home…no thoughts of bills…depression…problems with the kids or my marriage.  I can relax here and not think about anything.  It’s so nice to get away from it all and walk along the sand…look for seashells…watch for sharks and dolphins and crabs.  I’ve consumed a lot of snow-cones on this trip, too.  My favorite.

We’ve been going out to eat a little bit, but mostly all cooking at the house.  We’ve had a lot of fresh seafood…a few of the guys with us went deep-sea fishing one day and we ate what they caught that night.  I was skeptical but it was delicious. 

We’ve gone out to a few of the local places, and it’s fun to people watch and listen to the live, local music.  You can never be bored then, because there are endless people to make fun of.  It’s one of my pastimes.

I also haven’t really been thinking here about how I’m not drinking.  Practically everyone else here is, but there’s so much to do that I don’t dwell on it.  I have a lot of non-alcoholic options so I feel like I kind of fit in.

I think the biggest struggle for me at home is that I have too much time on my hands.  I like being home with the kids for the most part, but I’m someone who needs to stay busy or I think too much.  And my thinking tends to not be positive.  I’m working on that…it’s definitely a challenge for me.  I’ve been looking for a job outside the house just to keep me busy and prevent me from over-thinking everything, thinking everything’s doomed, I’m doomed…thinking I’m not good enough.  I know a big component of my bipolar disorder is biological, but I’m definitely better when I’m out of the house and away from the everyday, mundane, predictable routine of taking care of the kids (as I listen to them fight, ignore me, defy my orders, etc.)

Please don’t make me go home.

Something else that’s been awesome this week is that two of my cousins are here – the one who lives here in Alabama, and my other cousin who lives in Vegas.  We see Beth much more often than we see Lisa, the one from Vegas.  I love when I get to see her.  She’s the best.  She’s currently living in the Zen Center of Las Vegas.  When she’s not there, she works as a medical massage therapist.  She massages people like Bette Midler, NFL players, famous band members like Motley Crue, Lady Gaga’s crew, etc.  I love talking to her.  She’s so interesting, hilarious, and open-minded.  She’s also had an array of health problems fairly recently, but she has the most upbeat attitude about it all.  I really wish I could see her more.  I love her so much.

I’ve had baby fever recently, and my cousin Russ and his wife Nicole brought their 6-week-old baby.  She’s pretty much the most amazing thing ever.  I’ve loved holding her.  I can’t say that it’s really quenching my fever…well, maybe when she cries.

I’ve been trying to think of ways I can carry this relaxed, vacation feeling home with me when we leave.  I’ve been so much happier this week…part of it could be the new medication I was recently put on, but I think it’s a combination of factors.

My cousin Beth’s boyfriend, John, is a pilot, so he took us all up in his plane today.  It was awesome.  It was so exhilarating to see the Gulf, all the buildings, all the tiny people who looked like ants under their tiny umbrellas.  It was really cool.  I didn’t want to come down.  This has been so much fun; I just don’t want it to end…but it will.  But I guess that’s why they call it “vacation.”  It’s not meant to last forever.  If it did, I suppose I’d get restless and sick of it and want something new…like the way I feel at home now.  And soon it’s back to reality.

Maybe there will be a Gulf of Ft. Jennings when I get home.