I love the beach, and especially a beach that’s virtually uninhabited. So, in search of the perfect place for our family vacation this year, I discovered a little barrier island located right here in my home state of South Carolina. Except for the seven years we lived in West Texas, I’ve lived in South Carolina my entire life. Yet, this gem of a place - this barrier island - was unknown to me.
It was everything I desired. No cars, few people, miles of sandy beaches, sand dollars scattered along with each step. No email, no urgency, no meetings or pressing problems to solve. Often I was the only person on the beach. Perfect.
It was a true vacation. The way, in my mind, a vacation should be. A time of relaxation. And of reflection and introspection. Nights spent around the dinner table laughing with family. Reading novels instead of business books. Enjoying the beauty and taking in the phenomenal scenery, of nature.
And that nature even included snakes and alligators! I saw two cottonmouths within the first 30 minutes on the island. And then later in the week, while out exploring the island one afternoon, I happened upon an alligator on the side of the road. It immediately scampered down the hill and into the swamp, but boy did it scare me! Certainly took a while for my heartbeat to return to normal after that! I don’t like snakes or alligators!
And that nature also included mosquitoes. I’m not talking about the occasional mosquito you swat at, I’m talking about swarms of mosquitoes that would have carried me away had I stood still for too long.
In spite of being on guard for snakes and alligators; and darting and diving and swatting at mosquitos, the time I spent with family and reflecting on life was invaluable.
The thought that kept running through my mind while on the island for seven glorious days was:
Am I living a life that matters?
I am so thankful for those seven days - thankful that I took the time to completely unplug, to reflect, recharge and rejuvenate and to spend time with people I love so dearly. I've made a promise to myself to continue doing the things that truly matter.
From my heart I encourage you to take time to recharge, reflect and rejuvenate and spend time with the people you love. Live a life that matters.