Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Pre-Post Vacation Traumatic Stress Disorder

I just discovered something while on our family getaway to Corolla, North Carolina. I need more attention. Is this pitiful? Selfish? Unfair? I'm not sure, but I don't think so. You know what? Our family needs more attention as well.

At home there is very little "down" time- time to think about the quieter things inside you... the things that hide right under the surface. You step away from the hectic that makes up your normal every day life and you realize certain things.

We are together as a family for EIGHT whole days- this is the first time in 12 months, sad but true. This is a rarity in Baltimore, Maryland (our home). We rarely vacation. My husband works long hours and travels occasionally during the week. On the weekend I work. Our family is not often together as a complete whole. Returning to Baltimore means breaking up our wholeness, paying bills, coexisting with a barking dog (who I share a love/hate relationship with- ask the dog, she would agree), scheduling doctor appointments, filling out school forms, buying school supplies, doing laundry, going to the grocery store ... oh, the list goes on. I DON'T WANT TO GO BACK!! I feel like the little kid that doesn't want to leave the toy store, or the man who just won the jackpot and is standing in Home Depot, or the woman who won a shopping spree on Park Avenue.

Our vacation was phenomenal. We arrived on a Sunday and stayed for a week in a condo with a beautiful pool. The weather was gorgeous every day and we were next to the ocean. Temperatures were in the low 90's and the ocean temperature was 84 degrees. We arrived on Sunday and around Thursday evening I started to fall into a depression (SEVERE). I started crying (secretly, of course) on Friday.

There was no easy way to drown out my return-to-Baltimore sorrow, so I did the most wise thing a mom could do while riding home in the family mini van- I started eating disgusting foods (but oh, so tasty to me). While in Corolla, North Carolina, I discovered a tasty little Outer Banks treat- canned boiled peanuts. I just popped the top and ate them cold and wet, right out of the can (well two cans, but who is counting). They are delicious! I added orange soda and sour cream potato chips to make a complete meal that I ate the whole way home. Need disgusting food combinations? Talk to me, the expert.

Flash forward two weeks...
There was no easy way out of this funk. It took a total of three weeks to pull out of the post-vacay depression, but I have something to look forward to now. In about 330 days, our family will be returning to the Outer Banks, so put the anti-depression meds away (until this time next year).