I turned 31 yesterday and this past week has been like a walk down memory lane for me. I spent the last week at Virginia Beach with my mother, my nieces and my sister. I spent many summers at Virginia Beach as a child, my great grandmother has a cottage there and I went there every summer until I was about sixteen years old. I went back many summers while in college and law school to share the memories with my friends. Just after my husband and I got married the cottage was sold and my Husband and I went to the beach to clean it out. I hadn't been back to Virginia Beach since that day, I had mixed feelings about going to the site where so many of my childhood memories were made and seeing an empty grass lot where the cottage had once stood. On the way up to Virginia we stopped to visit my grandfather's grave.
My grandfather died three years ago. He is a major reason that I am the person I am today and each time I look at my progress I feel a small pang of regret that he never got to see me live up to the full potential he always believed was there.
We avoided it for a few days, but we took a drive past the place where the cottage used to be. There was nothing there but grass. Even though the cottage was gone, we still had a blast at the beach. It was comforting to know that even though the house was gone I could still make memories at the beach. It is a lame metaphor for my life, my former identity is gone, but I can make new memories the way I am now.
This weekend I walked on the beach in a bathing suit, and while I don't exactly feel like a Hawaiian Tropic model, I didn't feel like people were pointing and laughing at me either.
Here is a glimpse of some of those new memories: