I have been struggling a bit lately. I haven’t felt like myself. Or, rather, I haven’t felt my self.
As far as I can tell, I am still doing the things I should be doing. Parenting, being a husband, working (hopefully close to that order), being a brother and a son, and so forth. In other words, all of the places I connect with the world, I believe, are still connecting.
But, I have found myself on a number of occasions saying “I need a vacation,” and candidly, that’s not really like me. I have also found myself feeling like I am in “a grind,” which is also not really like me.
Last week, I watched my daughter walk down the beach, prancing and twirling her “lovey,” occasionally stopping to scratch the surface and feel the gritty coolness of the sand. Exploring, absorbing, wondering.
I watched her consume the energy of the conversation at Thanksgiving dinner and speak up to offer her own, even if it made no sense to anyone else. Giving, receiving, engaging.
I saw her connect with her older cousins, grandparents, aunt and uncle. Playing, learning, loving.
Her self was present, and it enlightened mine as I struggled to be so. She was on her beach (not just “the beach”) wherever she was. And, she walked it, ran it, danced it, sang it, crawled it, and climbed it with all that she has. She was living it.
I am still learning to do so (and it is my parental imperative to help her never forget).
So, here I am, reaching for the sand again, writing it, crawling, trying just to walk my beach again.
As I take moments to reflect and cultivate my self in words, I will start to feel the breeze again. As I pause and stop the struggle and become one with life as it is in this moment, my toes will start to dig in and thread the lightness of the sand until rooted in its abundance. And, as my self and soul again find their relationship to the world, the water will roll upon me, move the ground beneath me, and expose me once again.
This is life. And, I need to remind myself to live it.