I just gotta say… if you are pms-ing and anything in your life is a bit hard at the moment? Grey’s Anatomy last night could have put you over the edge. Dear lord, did y’all see that??? Could it have been MORE depressing and less hopeful? If suicide rates went up last night, I think we can all agree it was from watching the season finale of THAT show. Isn’t television our fluffy outlet for our own lives sometimes? Geez louise, I don’t need to see people failing a test that means their whole careers have to change now, marriages ending before they begin at the alter, couples breaking up (even if the chick does drive me crazy) that fought so hard to be together and unrequited love over and over and over again. I needed a prozac cocktail after that!
I don’t mean to say that things in my life are bad though. They are not. Life gets hard sometimes and that is the deal. I am very very busy and that is good. I am terrified of not getting this book done on time, even though I know me and I will. I think a lot of us are in a busy time right now because many of my friends are not around either. Friends are graduating, freelancing, selling houses, just living life. But. But. But summer is coming. And summers are magical for me. They always have been. And I feel my energy rising as I am about to enter my favorite season of the year.
Summers in my childhood were running around all day long in the neighborhood. Watching the boys next door play a million wiffle ball games in a row. My sisters and our bestfriends walking to the small convenience store that took hours because we were girls and we lollygagged and giggled and played and stopped a million times to pet the cat or the dog or find a baby bird. What seemed like miles and miles and what was in reality most likely a mile could be walked alone withut parents fearing we would get abducted. When we got there we all emptied our pockets and bought soda and candy bars. Then walked back home – a huge adventure had. We climbed trees, we played Clue for hours, we did science experiments with stolen perfume bottles and anything we could steal in the kitchen with out being noticed. (Only years lader did I realize I once stole a bottle of Chanel Number 5 and did you know what happens when you put salt into beer? Do it outside if you want to know.) We had sleepovers almost every night it seemed and most nights my dad grilled out for dinner. We would play kickball in the huge backyard and the white birchtree was always first base. My dad played catch with us until he deemed the evening light was too dark and he didn’t want us breaking our nose the way he did as a boy in that strange evening light that can make you not see a ball coming at your face. We caught lightening bugs in glass jars with holes punched in the lids and let them out at the end of the night cause little girls can’t deal with the thought of killing little bugs with little bug familes waiting at home. There is nothing that makes me feel safer or more secure as an adult than to sit on a warm evening outside and smell charcoal and hamburgers grilling.
My dad would take a day off of work and bring us to the shore for the day. We would stay for hours getting salty and sticky and sunned until we were exhausted. Then he would buy us ice cream cones and we would pack it all up and drive home, more red than mom would care for, but I bet she enjoyed her day off. Only now do I realize the treat it probably was for my mom to get a whole day of not watching and caring for three little girls.
My summers now are still magical. We start off almost every summer at a beach house we all rent. Out little family of five has grown so much as we have all married and have significant others. Last year, my baby sister had her own baby on the day we got there. (Little Alek’s arrival kind nixed their beach trip) This year we will have 5 grandkids there. The grandkids now out-number the kids. In another week there will be magic. Sandcastles to be built, shells to collect, walks along the edge of the ocean as the sun sets and sitting on the deck under a blanket of millions of twinkling stars listening the the ocean waves lap onshore and then recede so sweetly over and over again. I run every day at the beach, either at sunset or at sunrise. Hardly taking my eyes off the ocean the entire time. By the end of the week I am usually up to an hour long run. There is something about the ocean that gives me an energy I cannot explain. I crave it and when I am there, looking at the enourmous expanse of it, feeling somehow so tiny, yet somehow so connected to something bigger, I feel at home. The ocean, while huge and dwarfing, makes me feel significant somehow, like I matter as much as every drop in it. I can’t explain it, I just feel it. It is part of the magic. And I know I need it it my life and one day I will have it in my life every day. But for now, I take it when I can get it and I am grateful for every moment because it makes me feel so alive.