Here’s me at the beach:
First three days: I wish I was home. Why did I book two weeks? It’s too much.
Day 4: It’s so great here. We really need to get our own place. Where did I see that cottage for sale?
Third to last day: I am so sad to leave this place. I feel angry that we have to go. Where was that place for sale again?
Day before leaving: maybe I should start packing the car this morning. We might even leave tonight.
A lot of people miss home when they travel away from it. My loneliness for home begins before I ever leave it. At least two days prior to, I start to get anxious about projects not completed, floors not cleaned, rooms not rearranged for better viewing should someone need to enter the house while I am away.
For two days after arriving at our destination I give into feelings of dread that I’ve left the stove, iron, or whatever on, thus picturing the cats going up in smoke.
By about day 4, I no longer worry about those details. The sleeping is great, there is plenty to see and do, and I’ve not heard of any smoldering houses in Sackville. Time to relax. And I do. Then I dream.
Wouldn’t it be great to have a place of our own at the beach? Surrounded by our own stuff? Where was that place I had seen for sale? I must message that guy. And the data usage explodes along with my imagination. After working through the impracticality of such an investment, I settle in for several extraordinary days of beautiful weather, hooking and writing time, being with Bea and Sal, and visiting with faithful friends.
And then, boom: fog, headaches, the old foreboding in the belly feeling. I begin to panic just a little. Where was that place again? I could at least ask to see it, throw out an offer.
Oh…it’s already been sold?
Now, I know a woman of faith should have more…well…faith, don’t you think?
I sure do. So it’s a little disheartening when those old behaviors that have haunted me for at least four decades continue to surround me from all sides.
It’s like living in a nutshell.
And then I see it all too clearly. It’s all about the leaving. And possibly another whole year before returning. We all know what can happen in a year.
My mother told me that she always found the beach lonesome, especially at night. I never quite knew what she meant by it, but I always remembered what she said and I’ve thought a lot about it this year.
The ocean is so very vast, and I cannot be anything but moved when I am anywhere near it. Perhaps that’s what she meant. It’s hard to adapt to its hugeness. Being at the beach also reminds me of loss and grieving. There is beauty but there is also sadness and with it a feeling of loneliness. It’s the vastness of change, like the vastness of the ocean, at work in me.
For two plus weeks I have been working on a rug of my neighborhood, humming, revising, and detailing, as I go. The ideas have developed and taken wonderful turns as they flow and pull me out of the darkness.
I know as I settle back to my floor frame at home, my experiences at the beach will also escape in colors of violet and green and muscle shell blue…
Storm clouds and white wash too…
For, it’s from the old I travel to the new…