While on hiatus from writing, I decided to create a new chapter in my life altogether, so my partner and I bought a 1937 coastal cottage in the Golden Isles. We’ll be renovating it over the next few months–which means I’ll be learning how to actually use tape when I paint, how to lay ceramic tile, how to repair sub-floors, and how to do a hundred other things I never thought I was capable of learning to do. I plan to surprise myself.
There are no immediate plans to move out of Atlanta, mind you. I have a great job here and a fabulous support group, but you never know what will happen in the future. Let’s just say I’ve reached a point in my life where I’m open to all possibilities. So for now, our coastal home will be a weekend retreat.
I can’t help but think how ironic it is to begin to create a life for myself at the beach amidst the publication of a book that begins with a desperate childhood fantasy of having a normal vacation at the sea with my parents. (Read my prologue here). That vision of a “normal” beach vacation was the only way I saw happiness back then, and I was convinced that unless my dream was realized, I would never be content.
That “normal” beach vacation with my mother and father never happened–and perhaps it never will–but I am finding great comfort these days in learning to accept what is, and in taking responsibility for creating my own road to peace and fulfillment. And realizing that happiness comes in many forms, and might not look the way I originally thought it would, certainly helps as well.