It was another day of Summer vacation. Like clockwork (why does this always happen on the weekend or on vacation days!?!), the kids woke up waaaaay too early, and were begging for breakfast before my eyes were even close to being fully open. Empty dishwasher. Cut fruit. Cook eggs. Put dishes in dishwasher. Groundhog morning yet again.
I had some coffee in the hopes that I would be revived. I showered, thinking the warm water would awaken my soul. But it just wasn’t happening. I couldn’t get my mojo.
Before long, the kids started bickering with each over about a game they were playing. I began to see clearly all of the toys scattered on the floor, the clothes strewn about, waiting to be folded, and the unmade beds. Dishes in the sink, and no plan for the day.
Justin could sense that I was unsettled. It probably has to do with being together for almost 20 years now, but he’s so good at responding when I feel paralyzed. “Everyone in the car! We’re going on an adventure.” Of course his words were met with discontent by one of our children, because of course all six of us can never agree on anything (see post “There’s Always One”). But like a good soldier, Justin just kept marching, throwing various things into the car, helping the kids all find their shoes, and ushering us all out the door before anyone could say another word.
We drove for an hour and a half, and arrived in Half Moon Bay, a gorgeous Northern California coastal town south of San Francisco. Justin and I had been there several times before, but never with our kids. We parked and everyone jumped out of the car, making their way down a stairway to the beach.
The next several hours held so much goodness.
We dug holes in the sand, built sandcastles, chased the waves on the shoreline, and searched for seashells.
Justin then pulled out our kite, which he had brought along, and we all took turns flying that beauty up and down the beach. The sun was shining, the air was clear, and there was a gentle, cleansing breeze that washed away the cobwebs in our heads. It was blissful, and I didn’t hear a single whine, disagreement, or cry for our entire venture. We stayed until the sun started to set.
On our drive home, I told Justin how grateful I was for his leadership that day. For sensing a potentially difficult day at home, and for knowing how to pull us all out of it before we even knew we were drowning in it. I told him that going forward, if I ever felt that way again, to “just take me to the beach.”
Whether it’s the beach for you, or the forest, the lake, or your own backyard, sometimes we all just need to take a step away to a place that rejuvenates us. If we, or those who love us, are able to give us even a quick reframe, that might be all we need to see things clearly again.
Life is good, friends. Carry on.