We've had a rule since they were pretty small - always bring extra clothes to the beach. It sounds silly, but there have been lots of evenings we'd go to just splash our feet, play in the sand and watch the sunset... not planning on a swim, because maybe it was too cold, or we just had 20 minutes. But we learned our lesson early on. Someone always ended up soaked from head to toe - either by chance or by desire. So it became a rule. No matter what, towels & a full change of clothes were part of the plan.
Until Cam's last night home in June.
A storm was rolling in at home, and we thought it might be storming at the beach... but on his last night, we took a chance. Twenty minutes of drive time can make a big difference, and it did. Perfect beach night weather, with not a storm cloud in sight.
We walked and wrote messages in the sand. We laughed at the coquinas at the edge of the surf. We talked, and we didn't. And then we waited for the sun to set... the whole reason we came on his last night home. As we stood in the shallow, waves lapping over our feet, he said... I kind of want to just swim. His shorts were half-way to soaked, and it didn't take him more than five minutes from to wanting to, to deciding he just needed to be in.
What can a mom do but smile? And remember that rule from a lifetime ago. A time when I was almost his whole world, when I could scoop his whole little self into my arms and just hold on.
There are days I'd go back to... try again, do better... savor.
But tonight I just laugh... and soak in this time, just us... hoping it will last until Christmas.
p.s...and when we were almost home, he asked did you grab my shoes? And so his favorite footwear spent the night on the beach. He was able to rescue them, with an hour to spare, before we had to leave for the airport!