Relationship Goals

Same day, different observation. The two pictured above walked from the sand toward the shore. He in his little bathing suit. She in her bikini. I would say they were in their 70’s. They stopped several yards from the waves and lifted their arms up toward the heavens. Then, they began what can only be described as calisthenics. Arms up and back. Swinging. Bending. Clearly a routine they both knew. Describing it to HT he said, “Like Jack Lalane?”

“Yeah. Exactly.”

There was vibrancy in how they moved.

They appeared to be reveling in being active. In being active under the broad sky, looking out at the ocean and the horizon. They did not care about what they looked like. They weren’t hiding or covering anything up.

After their routine, they went into the water. She hanging back a little, going slow. He, diving in.

Their whole ritual took maybe twenty minutes. And they were off.

I was happy for them.

And I hoped HT and I get there some day, free, and happy, and out there in tiny bathing suits, not giving a rip about anything but the joy we feel in the moment. Not caring who knows it.

Safe Travels

After an exhausting month, and following an exhausting day, I dropped the girl off at school and headed to the beach. I had about an hour before I was to teach. I walked for a little bit, then sat in my trusty four-year-old $10 beach chair from Target.

A family walked by. Two boys. Maybe 8 and 10. One boy flapping his hands fast and furiously, appearing to be excited by the water, the freedom of the ocean air. It likely wasn’t his usual routine to be at the beach at 9AM on a Tuesday. They seemed to be on vacation.

Passing me without noticing me, I noticed them. My attention went to the mom. My heart went out to her.

Without knowing her story, I know her. Having autism comes with gifts, but it isn’t easy. It comes with challenges. When those challenges cause your child to suffer, you suffer too. So this mom has been through some stuff. The whole family likely has. And let’s be real, vacations with kids are technically not vacations for moms, as a rule.

Closing my eyes, I took a breath and sent them loving-kindness. I prayed for their happiness and that they be safe from harm. That they be healthy. That their lives be easier rather than harder.

I like to pray for unsuspecting people. It’s a good way to pass time while you’re waiting. I do it in line a lot. If you’re bored, antsy? Look around and pray for someone. And if you don’t pray…you can just wish them well. Or give them the benefit of the doubt.

If you want a real workout, pray for someone you don’t like. I did this recently and it really changed a very charged negative loop I was on about someone. It reminded me I didn’t really know her struggles, or what would make her act like such a hag.

What a relief.

Anyway…I hope that family is having the best vacation. I hope that boy is flapping with joy, and that his heart is content. I hope the mom is getting some time-outs, just for her. May they be well.

Safe travels, everyone.