The best summer ever?

The best summers are the ones that we don't treat like an assignment.

Margaret Ann Mickelberg

The best summers are the ones that we don’t treat like an assignment.

Margaret Ann Mickelberg, Staff Writer

Let’s not “make this summer the best one yet.” Let’s just let it be such. 

Summers have always had such a pressure to be “the best” three months of teenagers’ lives. Movies and social media push a fantastic image of summer (especially leading up to the break) to teens while they sit and procrastinate their homework for the home stretch of school making it hard for us to avoid mentally planning how amazing our summer is going to be, just like the posts and films we see. In my experience, however, the best summers happen when we least expect them to. 

In the last three years I have not once used the phrase “make this summer… (insert superlative).” Because I really haven’t had a choice regarding exactly what I’ll do. I live in the middle of nowhere in northern Minnesota from when school gets out to when LHS girls tennis starts. I get a job for those few months and have a few specific weeks to have guests stay with me at the cabin, but other than that, my summers are unplanned and open to split second decisions.

This means that the last three summers have all been the most spontaneous ones I remember. These summers are also the ones I’ve enjoyed the most.

It’s the little things that make a summer fun and freeing. Off roading on the golf cart, doing backflips off the boat all day or just laying out in the sun listening to great music are what I remember the most because these moments are when I truly feel happy. Feeling really at peace, not trying to improve or post the best picture, is a feeling that seems to be rarer and rarer as I get older and I expand my interests to more things I want to be good at. 

Summer is supposed to be a break from school, a break from unnecessary stress. Treating summer like an assignment that you have to get 100% on won’t make it 100% in your mind and heart at the end of the day.