Based on a bit of luck/happenstance I’ve been able to stretch my summer vacation to two months. I had planned to take a few weeks off to reflect on life and think about where I should be focusing (and I have done a lot of that), but the chance to take the summer off with my kids was just too tempting to pass up. My daughters are 6 and 9 years old this summer, and it’s been more fun than I can describe to have the freedom to just do things with them – some of it planned, a lot of it spontaneous, and sometimes to just be around while they play and grow.
It’s a little hard to not work. I miss the rhythm and the challenges, and of course the income compared to spending out of savings. I get antsy some days, then we find something to do together and all is good again.
Does it have to be two months of every day? I’d say it doesn’t. The kids need time to themselves. I could see weeks instead of two months, or working half days during the summer, getting home at lunch or after with plenty of time to drive to the beach or a theme park before dark.
It’s not all about the family time though. I’ve had a chance to do the slow thinking that I needed. I see some mistakes and detours I’ve made. I’m still taking stock of the lessons learned and how I might combine all of the skills and experiences I’ve accrued to do more interesting things. I’ve got a project or two in mind that will challenge me and maybe move me to the next step in my career.
I don’t know that I’ll do this next year, but I’m sure I will do it again at some point. It’s not the easiest thing to arrange, but it you get the chance I’d highly recommend it.