Happiness In The Hamptons
My story is about how the Hamptons saved me from a sad time in my life. I grew up in a tough neighborhood with no knowledge of the Hamptons and all it has to offer. My childhood years in the summer months would consist of me and my friends hanging out in parks and playing handball. We did not have the luxury of vacations. Some of my friends got involved with drugs to escape their depressing and abusive home lives. One of my best girl friends, Annette, in 1976 had been shot in the head and died from a gang related war. My father felt it was time to escape the hard life in my old neighborhood and he moved us to Plainview, LI.
I married at the age of 21 and had a precious baby girl who I named Justine Elizabeth. My baby was born with Transposition of the Great Arties. I was devastated, confused, scared and alone. My husband could have cared less about our baby girl. My family did their best to be supportive but dealing with the fact that my baby was going to have closed and open heart surgeries before the age of 3, was just a nightmare.
The ordeal of living in hospitals with my baby was truly a horrible experience and a challenge of my inner strength. All I kept on saying to myself was, “Why, why, does this happen to innocent babies”? I divorced my husband after my daughter’s surgeries because he was mentally abusive to me and a heartless father with no care of the outcome of his daughter’s health conditions.
While staying 24/7 with my baby in the St. Francis Hospital, I would see pictures in magazines of celebrities vacationing in the Hamptons. I would read stories about the amazing places in the Hamptons and would dream about one day having the pleasure of visiting the Hamptons. I would make time go by in the hospital by planning all the places Justine and I would vacation in the Hamptons when she was well enough. Late at night when I could not sleep, I would write down restaurants we would dine at West, South and East Hampton. I searched out accommodations with great excitement; I was escaping in my mind the hospital to happiness in the Hamptons for me and my daughter. All of this reading and planning helped me from not losing my mind from witnessing what my baby girl was going through daily in the hospital.
For 6 years of her life, Justine endured pain and suffering to get better. Finally, when the surgeries where over, that summer was our first vacation away. To the Hamptons we went and we had a blast at the beaches and in town. We love Main Street in West, Bridge, South and East Hampton.
Justine is now 30 and we have made a tradition of visiting for a day or vacationing for a weekend to the Hamptons as much as we can from May – November months. We go to the wineries, we love shopping at the vegetable and fruit stands. We shop on all the Main Streets and cannot get enough of how many wonderful boutiques there are. We have eaten in many restaurants from West – East Hampton and we still have so many more restaurants to dine in. We love The West Hampton Theater and have seen many performers there. We attend events for The Cancer Society, Heart Association, St Jude, and many animal fundraisers all over the Hampotns on a yearly basis. We have fun times at many social events, such as launch off parties for many of the magazines that print about the Hamptons. We enjoy The Hampton Classics every year, a real classic! We love the fall in the Hamptons with pumpkin and apple picking. The foliage is just so colorful with the autumn breeze and the smells of crisp air in the Hamptons, just brings us happiness.
I will always have the Hamptons in my heart because it was my salvation and now it is my realization. It is a place that I have many wonderful memories with my daughter and hope one day to make new memories with my grandchildren.