This past summer has been a summer of growing pains. I have outgrown people and things, but more specifically, I have outgrown things that leave my soul heavy.
This summer taught me to create space and walk away in peace. I am tired of carrying things and people that leave my soul heavy. The journey to get here wasn’t easy for me. It was filled with so many moments of pain, heartache, and utter confusion. Some would call them growing pains!
My Home Town
You see, each summer my family and I head back to my little town of Charlevoix, Michigan. It is my little slice of heaven. Whenever we go back, I think about the following quote;
“There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged, to find ways in which you yourself have changed.” – Nelson Mandela
This little town is full of beauty and so much peace. It is a place that never seems to change, but each year I go back I find myself so incredibly different than who I was the last time I was there. The growth that happens between visits is exciting, but also heartbreaking. This idea of growing and letting go has been one of my greatest struggles.
This is the town I went on my first date in. I remember that day oh so clearly. I was meeting a blonde haired, blue eyed boy by the name of Zach for an afternoon movie. It is where I had countless sleepovers with my childhood friend, where we watched Dirty Dancing on repeat and ate popcorn. The place where my husband asked me to spend the rest of my life with him. It is the town I return to with my children now, so they can experience the magic of the drawbridge and the beauty of the Great Lakes. I have watched countless sunsets here and walked the beaches time and time again. It serves as a reminder that just because we experience growth, doesn’t mean all the beauty is lost.
My heart holds tight to the simple pleasures of my little town. It also holds tight to the memories made and the friends that I grew side by side with. Some of those friendships have been lost over the years due to what I call “life” and some of the memories bring tears to my eyes while other bring butterflies to my belly.
Every Summer Has a Story
When we returned this summer, I should have known that things would be different. Hell, we’re in the middle of a pandemic. National Forests were burning. There was rioting and looting. To say it was a normal summer is far from the truth.
I was hoping that I would return to my hometown the same way I left it, but when those plane wheels came to a screeching halt on the runway, something felt different. It took me almost two weeks to realize things had changed, but the night before we left to return to Colorado, I was hit with what felt like a wave of harshness. This place will always be home, but I have outgrown it so much and I am okay with that. What I didn’t realize though was, I had outgrown you. The one person I thought would always be a constant.
Growing and Letting Go
So, as I watched the sunset from one of my favorite places on our last night in my little town, so many thoughts came to mind. Most of them being around who I used to be, who I am today and the growth I have experienced over the years. During those seasons, I thought about the grace you gave me that I did not always deserve and the love that you gave me that I didn’t always understand. I’m so thankful for this place and all of the things it has taught me, and I am so incredibly thankful for you, but it is time to let go.
I hope you know that just because I am letting go doesn’t mean that it wasn’t beautiful. It just means we are growing at different paces and journeys have led us to different destinations. I hope that one day as I continue on my journey, you will find your way back in to it.