There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: Ecc 3:1
These Times they are A changing..
Yesterday I took a rare couple of hours and went to the beach alone. It was a perfect day, clear blue skies, the surf rolling softly, a cool breeze blowing keeping the heat at bay. The Atlantic was unusually blue yesterday, really calm waters. I got there at the perfect time of the day. There is a time in the tide cycle when the tide is way out which makes this awesome playground of tide pools and soft wet sand. This was our favorite time to go be at the beach when the kids were little. There were families playing and laughing together all around me. I laid listening to the conversations, the happy squeals of children running to the edge of the water then running back. I watched young teenagers going through the awkward first flirtation of summer. I saw an elderly couple slowly walking hand in hand, not talking, just walking, made me wonder what they were thinking about. By the end of the day, I think I could tell you what they were thinking.
I eventually got antsy and decided to go for a walk before I had to head home. I turned toward the long pier and decided to walk there and back. As I walked there was this little boy and girl playing, The little girl had curly brown hair, streaks of golden blond in it, running around in a yellow ruffly bathing suit, she looked to be about 1, and the little boy, hair sun streaked toe head blond, was wearing swim trunks that reached below his knees, he looked to be about 3. He was of course directing his little sister on the proper way to dig a hole in their pool. They were jumping from the edge into the foot deep water as if it were a huge olympic feet. I looked behind them to see the young mom and dad watching, smiling, taking pictures of this moment. The little girl turned and ran toward her mom, little rolls on her legs running hard and her sandy curls just bouncing. Her brother suddenly in his digging pursuits, discovered a sand flee. This whole scene seemed so familiar to me, as if I had lived that exact moment. Then I realized I have. I wanted to go to that young mom and tell here to savor each moment, take lots of pictures, force her mind to make sketches of it all.
I watched them for a time, the mom smiled at me, I think somehow she read my thoughts. In an instant there they were, Taylor and Megan, little tan bodies, jumping into their creation. Laughing, splashing running from the in coming waves. Yep, Taylor in his little white old man hat he used to wear at the beach and Megan in her white Ariel sunglasses with her curls full of sand. My sweet babies, so little so vulnerable. There I am, taking pictures, watching closely, being directed to sit in their little tide pool, digging up sand flees and hermit crabs. Sweet priceless moments with my children. Moments when little sandy bodies climb into your lap and fall asleep quietly exhausted from this ritual of play. Suddenly my eyes had that little burn that comes when tears suddenly show up without warning. My heart felt a bit of an ache in that moment. I felt utterly grateful to God for those moments that are so solidly fixed in my memories. The smell of their little sun tanned selves. Goodness I miss those times.
This year Taylor will be driving himself to the beach to meet his friends, their music playing, holding his girlfriends hand, Megan will surely be tagging along with her big brother. My children can now pick me up and throw me in the ocean if they had a mind to. It is likely that mom tagging along will no longer be cool, and there will be many more times for me to be alone at the beach. While I know this is a natural and good process, this moms heart surely aches for the hours of playing in tide pools, sweet babies who believed I was their world, the priceless value I felt in mothering my children. In those times I could keep them safe, control what they ate, kiss and hug all their hurts away. I wonder where the time has gone. I force myself to thank God in spite of the ache for times go by. God is good, and in each season we walk through, there is likely to be some pain, but I am also eternally grateful for each season and the people my kids are growing into. There surely will be grand babies someday to repeat this memory with…
These times the really are a changing