I grew up camping. I loved camping. It all started when my grandparents bought a travel trailer and a tent. They made plans with my parents at various times during the summers to go camping together. I’m from Michigan, USA originally, and in that state there are campgrounds everywhere. The coastal line along the Great Lakes provided many many campgrounds, which we frequented, and the inland lakes provided the same.
My favorite campground was at Lake Charlevoix up near Petoskey, Michigan. That would be the northwest part of the state along the coast of Lake Michigan. The emerald green and sometimes turquoise color of the water was breathtaking. While there, we went to the beach and looked for Petoskey stones (hence the name of the city). Other activities we did were fishing, swimming, hiking, riding bikes, exploring, and other kinds of interesting activities kids love to do. Eventually, our cousins went with us, which made the experience all that more fun.
Now that I am older, I don’t want to camp. The reason for that feeling has nothing to do with anything negative from my childhood experience of it, though. I have those cherished memories tucked in my heart. I guess I outgrew it and am on to other things now.
When I was a kid, my sister and I would play pretend all the time. I loved those times because we didn’t have a care in the world. We didn’t have the responsibility of grown ups yet. The freedom to dream stuff up while we played brought about so much enjoyment. Then as we grew older our interests changed (obviously). I remember, too, as a kid, not wanting to grow up because it meant taking on responsibilities outside of being fun. I think many of you can relate. Then, when I did get older, I wanted those not so fun responsibilities. Why? Because it meant a whole different kind of fun. But the pretend didn’t go away. Not really. It changed course by coming in the form of story telling and poetry writing.
Writing fiction and creating poetry gave me that same playful satisfaction that playing pretend as a child had. But not everyone writes. We’re all different and, therefore, we enjoy different things. I have one friend who loves to fish and goes on fishing expeditions by himself. It’s a time for him to relax and regroup. Plus it gives that time to allow his mind to take in the beauty of where his is. If feeds his soul.
What is your pretend time? What is your enjoyment? If you don’t have anything that frees up your mind and body from the day’s stressors, find something. If you can’t figure out what that something is, try different things. For me, as mentioned above, it’s my writing.