The Middle-Aged Woman and the Sea

Morning, Early

I ran down to the shoreline like a special needs child. Now don’t anybody get your panties all up in a bunch. Back in the day I woulda just said, “like a retard”. What I mean… I ran down to the shoreline like a wild, excited puppy…Where everything seems new and fresh and every moment of life is worth living. Like every time is the first time and you want to see it all and gulp it all up in a big soulful hug. That’s what I mean when I say, “like a retard”…or “special needs”. Did you ever watch the Special Olympics? If I only had half the verve…!

Anyway, back to the shoreline…

I had been trying so hard to connect, I was beginning to feel a little disconnect. I felt like I was still clinging, by a pinky, but clinging hard, to some old ideas about love. I was trying to write a love story, a beautiful story, a story for the ages or even just one for today. But every time I’d look ahead a few paragraphs in my mind, I was freezing.

What do I know about love?

When I got to the top of the dunes and saw the vast, gentle, pulsing sea and the new, low, morning sun playing disco ball on the surface, my body remembered everything about love. My body went shitzoid-tremble-batty and my soul exploded all over the beach. I kicked off my sandals and ran across the hot, dry, sifting sand, not giving a shit that I was losing my balance and grace the whole way. My feet were already burning a little (damn, that sand gets hot quick!) and I didn’t have a care in the world. I was giggling at the pain and lifted my arms out like wings, imagining I was taking off like a big, fat and healthy freegull!

When my toes hit the water I started singing “These Are a Few of My Favorite Things” and I threw back my head, letting myself spin and spin and spin in the descending and receding shallow waves. I stopped and crouched down, trawling the wet sand with my fingertips until the tickling, tiny claws of a sandcrab fell into my palm. I lifted it into the air and started singing and dancing with it…like a retard.

I laughed and spun and did clumsy cartwheels after setting the dizzy creature back into his home. I ran to the jetty and climbed the rocks, keeping in mind that I was first to ever reach these shores, I the explorer extraordinaire. I pranced to the last rock and yelled to the wind my victories.

Then I squatted, took a leak between the boulders and loved my nature.

I rested (a few feet away) for a bit, crooning love songs to Big Daddy.

My bum started to get numb after a few numbers, so I rose and turned away from the foamy, harmonizing waves. I wobbled a bit on rising so I stopped to steady.

That’s when I finally saw him.

The Lone Fisherman.

And from this far away I could see the sun was playing disco ball with his very amused smile.

Turns out…I wasn’t alone on the beach, after all.

dedicated in part, to Heart of Surfing, a not-for-profit group of extraordinary humans