I'm standing at an edge of the Atlantic Ocean digging my heels and toes into the pebbly sand as the undertoe tries to drag me in. I'm watching my brother boogie board along huge waves I haven't been close to in a long time. Geoff screams, "You gotta come in! It's awesome!" And I want to but behind me are Hadley and Harper.
They're flying a kite with my dad and I know they don't care if I go in, but I have this voice in my head that convinces me that now that I'm a mother I shouldn't have any fun. Well, fun, sure, but good for you stuff that makes you into a better person fun. Exercise. Writing. Prayer. Eating watermelon. It's good to enjoy these things, but throwing yourself into an oncoming wave twice your height? That's not appropriate.
Besides, yesterday somebody caught a stingray on the beach right around where I am standing.
Except I start to hop the waves as they come in and that gets me a little deeper into the ocean. Soon, I'm feet away from Kellee and Tara. The three of us are watching a wave tower over us when Kellee screams, "GUARD YOUR LOINS!!!!" She takes protective measures and jumps into the wave's crest. The wave slams into me and I'm flipped over unsure of where all my limbs are. I suppose I should be scared but Kellee's warning paired with getting totally beat up by a wave brings out a lovely carelessness in me and I can't stop laughing.
Geoff makes his way over and hands me a boogie board.
"You have to use this. It's so fun."
I take the board because if I don't it'll just ride the wave itself. There's no time for that silly voice in my head to tell me, "That's enough. You could get hurt. Besides, you're laughing too loud." Because what my brother is doing is so simple - he wants me to join in the fun. Stop dragging your heels, Callie, and get on the darn board.
Before we knew it, Harper didn't want to leave. She wanted to stay in music class. She wanted everyone to stay in music class. Music class is the greatest!