Summer 2016


I think this is my favorite photo from the summer.  Sunset, no filter, July 4th, Marion, Massachusetts.

Summer 2016 was uneventful and calm until the end, when it was far too eventful.  June, July, and the first half of August held lots of family time and a bunch of no-child time and many books and runs.  Summer was a reminder of how deeply blessed I am on the friendship front, as I was lucky enough to spend time with some of the women I love the most in this world. It also reminded us of how fortunate we are, and of the line we walk on a daily basis.  Despite difficulty at the end of the summer, we turn into September more viscerally aware of our good fortune than before.

I suppose challenges have a way of reminding us of all that’s good.

June started out with coding camp for Whit, then had hockey camp for Grace (meet my children), and then they spent 3 weeks with my parents doing sailing and tennis.  Matt and I spent weekends down there.  What a privilege to spend long empty days with both my parents and my children.  We had a marvelous reunion with my sister, her husband, and daughters, and all four cousins on my side of the family were together.  Then Grace and Whit went off to sleepaway camp for 3.5 weeks.  Matt and I laid pretty low during this time, weekdays working and weekends at the ocean.  We played tennis, sailed, swam, and read a lot of books.

We had a magical dinner with one of my oldest and dearest friends, Jessica.  She, her husband, Matt, my parents, and I had a relaxed, happy, wine-soaked dinner.  We debated and discussed and laughed and reminisced.  I’m grateful beyond words for her company on this road, the truest kindred spirit I’ve ever met.  I just wish we saw each other more.

I spent a weekend in Shelter Island with two of my three college roommates.  This was our second annual visit and it was even more spectacularly wonderful than the last one.  We swam off a boat, we watched a thunderstorm roll in, we played with one roommate’s small children, we laughed so hard our stomachs hurt.

I read a lot of books, and will write a post about them shortly.  A lot of great fiction, as was my plan heading into the summer.

We had a week with Matt’s family in Vermont, which was joyful, exuberant, noisy, full of waterskiing and tubing.  Matt’s parents had all three sons and all six grandchildren together. A rare treat.

And then the summer ground to a quick, sudden halt.

Matt tore his hamstring severely while waterskiing. Then Whit was diagnosed with suspected Lyme and treated.  The last couple of weeks of August were not our best.  Matt had surgery on his hamstring (the injury was both significant and unusual).  He reacted poorly to the  drugs he was on after surgery and fainted not once but twice (both times I caught him) on the last day of August at home.  We had two 911 calls, and the second resulted in ambulance transport to the ER.  He was gray, clammy, and not fully awake.  I was very scared.  After many hours ruling lots of things out, they think he had a reaction to the medication, both anesthetic and pain killers.

Matt is resting quietly as I write this.  Our children are healthy and Whit’s responded well to his Lyme treatment.  I feel tired and deeply thankful at the same time.  I have Pam Houston in my mind:

I was breathless and frightened by the frailty of miracles, and full of the fact of our lives

I hope you are all entering fall with awareness of your blessings, many happy memories from the summer, and some good books under your belt. Beginning September full of the fact of your life.  I know I am.


23 thoughts on “Summer 2016”

  1. It was the first summer I didn’t work in years. The summer I moved to Vermont. My youngest daughter studied in Europe and the day we dropped her at the airport was the day a van killed a lot of people in Nice. Shortly after that there was a shooting at a mall in Munich a couple of hours from where she was in Koblenz. So I followed her studies and adventures at school and when she finished, her travels throughout Europe, with a lump in my throat and joy for her chance to backpack through Europe like her Mom once did in a different world and a different time. I reminded myself Anwar Sadat was assassinated while I was traveling with my backpack and I got teargassed at an ETA protest in San Sebastion.

    My mom died from a long battle with Alzheimer’s with her family by her bedside. She was 82 and lived a wonderful life.

    So like the book I published last year, Life Is All This. And it always is. Thank you for reminding us all we are truly are blessed to be here, Now.

    Best wishes to your husband and wishing him a speedy recovery..

  2. First… that photo is spectacular! Your first line really summed it up — wow — but I’m so glad it was a short burst and things are back on track for fall. Definitely entering the fall grateful and full of memories here, too! Take care, Lindsey!

  3. I have missed your words!!! I am so happy Matt is resting now and the worst is behind you. But September will be a varsity month for you (thank you for sharing that so long ago!!)

    Take good care of yourself. I know you will continue to find the miracles even while you are pulling themule train.

  4. This is so rich with detail; so much heartbreak and so much love, all wound together. Thank you for sharing what sounds like a complex and extraordinary summer. xox

  5. Thank you (from someone whose photos I so esteem that means a lot!)! Not quite yet back on track but hoping we are moving in that direction! xoxo

  6. Thank you so much. I’m glad to be back. As I texted you, I love the image of the mule train. I’m pulling it for sure … uphill! xox

  7. I’m glad both Matt and Whit are healing – though I know there’s a way to go yet. It’s been a crazy, chaotic summer over here, but there’s also lots to be grateful for, and I’m looking forward to fall too. xo

  8. I’ve been thinking about you these past several days – trying to do my part from afar to right your ship, as it were, with prayers and so on. I can’t imagine how you must be coping. But clearly you are, and while I’m not surprised, I am impressed.

    Would that I could deliver casserole to your doorstep. Xoxo

  9. I’m glad you’re back, and glad to hear your guys are getting better. I am also very impressed how you can put things into perspective – ‘dealing with injury vs illness’ – and how you always find things to be grateful for. It helps me doing the same.

    For us it was the summer of moving to our new home, with all the joys and stresses associated with that. It was a time of feeling like we’re falling short for a number of reasons, but it was also the summer of our first, real, week-long vacation as a family of three. Plus we had both grandfathers there, too. So I was surrounded by (almost) all the men in my life. What a privilege. Heading into fall with my mom by my side for a couple of weeks, and we will celebrate a couple of birthdays together. Damn lucky, after all.

    Best wishes to you entire family!

  10. Lindsey, I’m so sorry your summer took a wild turn. How terrible, but I am relieved that everyone is now doing well. Lyme can be scary, I’m so glad you caught it when it can be treated. Hoping you have a quiet and uneventful autumn;).

  11. Sounds like a wonderful summer (I love the image of you with your grandfathers!) and enjoy your time with your mother, too. xox

  12. So glad to have you back, and even more so that your family is on the mend! Sending wishes for full recoveries and an uneventful, but rich, fall ahead.

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