Monday, May 25, 2015

Sand and Fog

We went to the beach tonight.
Spur of the moment.
Shoes, and towels flung quickly into the car.
We hadn't even checked the weather.

And when we got there, it was cold, and windy, and gray.
The fog rolled in, and the tide was out,
and all around smelled of the scent of ocean fish.

The girls looked hesitant as they climbed from the van.
Visibly upset at how it was all turning out.
Why were we here if they couldn't even go in the water?
What good was the beach without putting at least your feet in?

And as Tessa cried about how she just REALLY thought we were going in the water,
I had a chance to talk to her about how life really goes.

That sometimes you take a chance on things.

Sometimes you go into something knowing that maybe there will be sun,
but maybe there will be nothing but gray, thick fog, and foamy waves.

And how, still,
you take a chance.

Because it's all worth experiencing.

The beauty of the sun AND the chill of your entire horizon covered in fog.

The beauty of not being able to see everything clearly.

The beauty of really not always knowing what to expect.

Then, like magic, as we ran down dunes, and walked along the sand together-
As they found sandcastles left behind by other beach goers to dismantle -
As they tossed driftwood, and dug their toes in to the cold, wet world around them,
I could see their view of our adventure begin to shift.

That maybe beaches weren't just for bathing suits, and sunscreen, and wet feet.
Maybe beaches are also for running, and huddling, and for breaths so cold they almost aren't breaths, but that fill your lungs with something more than air if you close your eyes and

We were able to enjoy it, not for what it was just in that moment,
but for what we knew it to be.
We may not have been able to see out to the edge of the cliffs, or to the boats in the distance,
but we knew they were there, because we have seen them again and again, and if we know anything, we know that just because you cannot see something in the moment you want to see it, does not negate its existence.
Those things lived in our memories, and so - just as we were there - So were they.

When we arrived,
our faces were skeptical.
We wondered if we'd even stay.
THIS is not what we planned.
But by the time we left, our cheeks were red from wind, and laughter.
We stopped for hot chocolate by the kite store.
We ran into a friend.

And Tessa, done crying,
said, "I'm really glad you're my parents," softly to us in the car.

"We love you, too."

A few minutes ago,
kids and husband long in bed,
and house quiet except for the snore of a dog,
I stepped into the bathroom to find the entire floor covered in leftover sand that hitchhiked home in the cuffs of Paige's jeans.
Yet, rather than sweep it up,
I rubbed my feet around in it awhile,
and I smiled.

Because sometimes things are not just as simple as they seem.
Sometimes sand is not just sand.

Sometimes that sand is a lesson that you can miss so many things that are about to come your way,
if all you see

is the fog.