Holiday Beach

“Truly happy memories always live on, shining. Over time, one by one, they come back to life.”
— Banana Yoshimoto (Kitchen)

Right now I feel like there are two people living inside of me. The adult who has lived the last 39 years and the child who is stuck at age 5. When I say two people, I mean two literal people. I feel “her” feelings and mine. It is the most disturbing thing I have ever been through. Completely irrational child-like thoughts will fight their way out, and when they are expressed my Mother says she can see another person, a child. That is beyond terrifying to me. Instead of getting better I feel like I am going insane. I have an appointment with my therapist tomorrow and we might suggest something inpatient. If my insurance company would have been open today, I would have seen about it today, but they were not, so tonight I sleep in my own bed.

All of that to say this. I am trying so hard to assure her. Calm her. Quiet her fears. All she can do is think about the abuse and what has happened to her and what she missed out on because of it.

Today I went down to my parents to look at more pictures. I wanted her to see pictures before she was five, at five, and after five. I wanted her to see herself happy. I remember happy times, she does not. I wanted her to see that she hid it so well behind her smile that even I could not tell. She does not need to be angry at anyone for not guessing that she was hurting, and she does not need to keep beating herself up for keeping her secret. There was a reason. We may not know that reason in this life, and that is okay.

One of the happy memories I want to share with her is a day vacation we would take during the summer to a little man-made beach called Holiday Beach in Douglas, Georgia. We looked forward to these trips. The beach had two sides, one that was just the beach and one that had a beach and an amusement park, water slides, and indoor games. That beach had the biggest goldfish I had ever seen and I hated when they would swim by my legs. On the amusement park side the beach had a metal slide that you could walk or swim out to. The last time I swam in the beach, I slide down the slide and when I came up from under the water right in friont of my face was a floating human turd. Yep. YUCK!! It was only the amusement park rides and the water slides for me after that, no more beach. Either side!

They had two Rollar Coasters, one kiddie and then the Jetstar. I’ll tell you what, the kiddie was scary in its own rite. It would jerk you so hard and it was right beside the water, you just new you were going to fly right off into the poo water. The Jetstar was nothing short of awesome. You felt like something when you rode it, though it is nothing compared to the rollar coasters of today, the first BIG drop and quick turn would leave you screaming for the rest of the ride. When you first arrive at the park you would get a wrist band so it would not be unusual to ride it two or three times in a row. The park was not really busy.


There were two water slides and one Kamazaii. I think the funniest time was when I was one one of the water slides. The water was running really light, and the foam mat was not wanting to slide well as it was. My next trip down, part of the way down, the water stopped completely, my mat suctioned to the floor of the run and I rolled head over heals the rest of the way down, splashing into the pool at the end, just as the water started back and my mat followed.

So Holiday Beach was your first roller coaster, but it was also your first SkeeBall. Yes, that is were you mastered the art and grew to love the game. Even now, anytime I go to an arcade pizza place or game room, I see if they have SkeeBall, and I rack up the tickets. They had the coolest prizes you could trade your tickets for. I think my all time favorite was my switch blade hair comb. It was just awesome. I felt like one of the Greasers with it.

After we left the beach we would always stop at the same park to eat our ham sandwiches. I can taste the sandwiches now. Tastes like happiness and summer.


About Shanna

I'm Shanna. Living each day the best I can. Trying to learn and grow to be the daughter my Father in Heaven sees in me. Trying to overcome the trials of this life, and find some joy in each day.

6 thoughts on “Holiday Beach

  1. I’d forgotten about Holiday Beach! Your memory continues to amaze me.

    Do what you have to do today. I’ll call you later (when it’s not so early) to check on you. Love you.

    1. I am active making myself remember for her. I will be writing about our experience at the Jacksonville Zoo soon, you should enjoy that. I started to today, but felt drawn to,write about my siblings. Love you.

  2. I came across a reference to Holiday Beach on fb and googled it. That’s when I found this blog. I, too have fond memories of it. I only went once. Turns out, it was the family get away my dad wanted for his kids before he passed a few weeks later. I was 5. I never even knew where it was. Is it still there??
    Thank you for sharing. You’re very courageous for sharing this. I have new introspect.

    1. Thank you for your response. Oh that every child could have memories of Holiday Beach. Such a tender memory that your Dad gave you. I am sad to say it is no longer in operation. The doors closed years ago.
      Thank you again for reading.

  3. I was raised around holiday beach in douglas ga. my first known name was hillards pond when we first moved to douglas from fla in the 1970. back then it was just a place to go swimmim
    ng an fishing. alittle later it became holiday beach. it started out with a game room an skating rink an a little consession inside the main building. then it added the opery house for all kinda of country music an older. the the go carts an waterslides an air lifts to the other side of the lake where the cabins an swimming area was. years later it came to a hault. the music group Alabama tried to buy it an mr peacock turned it down. he said he could make more money by closing the park an selling acreage for homes to be built instead of coffee county keeping its main attraction open an going. so that’s how holiday beach lost its famous place in people life for there children an grandchildren an etc to cont, to be rememberd. just like crystal lake in Irwin county lost to people not wanting to keep an historical place going to be remembered for time to tell.
    such a great lost

I would love to hear your thoughts. Please leave a reply.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s