Monday, July 02, 2012

Chicago: Diving in

Chicago River walk
Sometimes, you need to recharge.

Work and life and health and everything conspire and it's like you can't even see your way forward anymore. Stuck. In the mess of your mind.

There have been so many things happening. Changes. Pressures. Plans. Work. Scheduling and task lists. Tempers and holding it all together. Barely. Thoughts about what I'm doing. And why. And what's next.

It was all clouding my brain. I wasn't being a very good me. Not blogging or writing at all, in fact. You know things aren't good when I'm not writing.

And then -- finally -- along comes the much-anticipated IABC World Conference! I was looking forward to it. I needed to get out of the office. To open up my brain to new thoughts and ideas. Figure out my way forward. Chicago is the perfect city.

It was perfect. I got some fantastic inspiration from the speakers. Some ideas from other attendees and exhibitors. And support and general time to talk with my boss. On top of that, I got to remember that my life is important, too. I remembered how much I love adventure and exploring.

Chicago River: Taken from the window of the conference hotel

I walked. And walked and walked and walked. I shopped and read about architecture as I marveled at gorgeous details in a city that cared enough to plan something special. I sampled as much fantastic, different food as I could. Good coffee, chocolate, ice cream, Indian-latin fusion, deep-dish pizza. My husband even found a place that played with your taste buds using miracle fruit. We listened to jazz and admired art. Walked along the river, the lake, the boardwalk, the beach. Sailed on the hottest day in seven years. Watched ballet. Fireworks.

I spent some much-needed time exploring by myself. But also a mix of time with amazing people -- opening me up to new ideas.

It felt like diving into some cold water on a hot, humid, hazy day. Bobbing up to the surface, refreshed. Remembering what it feels like to be excited.

I don't want to lose this feeling.

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