This morning I watched as the sun gently climbed out of the Atlantic and into the sky. The sea was calm, and the sun seemed loathe to disturb her. So she tiptoed in behind a film of mist. She perfumed the mist with soft essences of strawberry and violet and cornflower. And the world was still.
My husband and boys were sleeping the deep sleep of away. All responsibility and interference set aside for a time. All we must do is be. And drink deep of one another. And laugh. And talk long and slow. And see inside. And remember what it means to be family.
It has been important to us always, this coming away. Sometimes it has been a tent and a cooler, and stars and frogs. Sometimes it has been far flung places with other languages. The setting matters far less than the being together. The forging of family. The stories that are ours alone. The continual weaving of the tapestry of belonging.
Yesterday we drove. We revisited one of our favorite books, The Phantom Tollbooth. We laughed out loud. And we dialogued intently about the various conundrums and inventions and possibilities the story provokes. Then we sang along with a whole pastiche of musical artists and styles. And I smiled as my boys provided artful harmonies. And I wondered how many miles we have filled with singing over the years.
Today we will be joined by our daughter, her boyfriend, and our little granddaughter. And the web of family stretches. New memories will be forged with an ever expanding cast. And there will be laughter. And we may bump up against one another. This living on top of one another can be tedious. We will argue, perhaps. And hurt feelings. And apologize. And forgive. And begin again.
And when we go home, the tapestry that is us will have grown. There will be beautiful new strands of shimmery thread woven by the side of the sea. Strawberry, and violet and cornflower. And we will sometimes be too busy to remember. But it will be there, under our feet, keeping us warm.
*Delightful irony: A year ago today we also awoke on the shores of the Atlantic. But, from the other side.