My family had started planning to go to NYC ever since I was in middle school.
My mom had promised me that by my high school graduation, we would have made a trip to the dynamic, bustling city.
Unfortunately, tight budgeting and extremely overbooked schedules during the summers had gotten in the way of our plan, and so we ended up postponing the trip to the summer of 2020. We had hoped that this would be a nice celebration of my first year of college, and since we had dedicated such a large amount of time last year to get ready for school, we would be able to spend more time in the city than we would have been able to do previously.
A few days before we were supposed to go home for spring break, my mom called and said we would have to postpone our trip once again.
I was not happy with corona.
Honestly, I was more devastated this year than I had been years prior. And quarantine didn't help matters. Being isolated from close friends and being solely dependent on technology to communicate with college friends was not in any way helpful to my mental health.
I needed to see an ocean. I needed to see a skyline. I needed to renew my mind after I had been cooped up for months.
It was sad having nothing to look forward to. As a family, we usually go on a trip with my close cousins in the summer if we weren't going on a trip on our own.
That wasn't happening either.
Last week was the designated time frame in which we were supposed to visit the beloved city.
My mom still ended up taking the week off for work, but instead of having a high-intensity vacation in the city, we took the time to relax and be with each other. I was able to spend time with some of my friends and we managed to explore our own hometown more than we had ever before. I also got to reconnect with my next-door neighbor who I had been close to when I was younger, but who I had slowly grown apart from during high school.
My mom bought a kiddie pool and we passed the afternoons talking to each other while spending some well needed time outside. I was able to talk more with my grandma and learn about her past. I was able to see how well we relate despite our huge age difference.
I felt more of an appreciation for the little things than I had previously.
It was nice to see things in a more positive light.
I found it to be a blessing that I was able to recognize that devoting time to the people we choose to surround ourselves with can really help to strengthen the relationships that we value the most.
In other words, it is better to look at the glass half full and be grateful for the people you have in your life.
Vacations should be extra time to spend with the ones you love. They can also be about exploring new places, but more importantly, they should be a time to reconnect with the people you are closest to.
You don't need to rent out a fancy beach house or fly halfway across the world to have a great vacation.
It may come as a surprise, but sometimes the best vacation may be in your own backyard.