As a child I remember impatiently counting down the days until the last day of school. 10-year-old me was enraptured with the idea of unlimited play-dates, developing a strictly “Popsicle-only” diet, and watching my knees turn golden brown – evidence of a successful day of outdoor activities. Instead, I found myself spending the majority of the summer attending summer camps I had no interest in going to, being dragged around New York City with my mom while she went on thousands of errands, and sitting in the backseat of our silver Saab, suffering from carsickness as we journeyed up and down the east coast for family vacations. I came to the conclusion that summers are never as fun as you want them to be.
This thinking carried into my adolescence, and subsequently my adulthood. As a high school student, summer made me miss the consistency of my 7:00 am alarm clock and mundane activities such as riding the bus home every day through downtown Seattle. Instead I found myself sleeping until 10:00 or 11:00 with a headache from staying up too late reading or scrolling through twitter. This might seem unusual for a teenager, but with a single dad, my house often felt quiet, and that loneliness always came to full attention in July and August.
I’ve always preferred to have a small group of friends, so when those few friends were out of town or working, I found myself even more isolated (not that I’m the type to reach out to them anyway), and I passed time in the mild Seattle heat with hobbies one only resorts to during the desperation of the summer months. One time I tried knitting, but my neck began to hurt and my collection of knitting needles made me feel like I had reached premature retirement. One day in early August I decided I wanted to try to make the USA gymnastics team. It didn’t seem to bother me that at age 14, I was far behind the girls that began doing back handsprings at the age of three. I also didn’t know how to do a somersault, which for whatever reason was quite the barrier between me and my Olympic dream.
As of today it is July 28th, and I have about one more month of suffering before I head off to university and fall into my blissful routine again. Maybe this blog is one of my last ditch efforts to pull myself out of the summer blues, but I’m hoping this one will stick around a bit longer than my dream to become the next Nadia Comaneci. More to come.