Time is a subjective thing. For some, 45 minutes is a lifetime. For others, 45 minutes is a blip, little more than a blink. 45 minutes in a dentist’s chair is absolutely different than 45 minutes at a party. And 45 minutes in a car on the way there definitely feels longer than the 45 minute car ride home.
This morning I got to spend 45 minutes on the beach with my youngest. He’s a handful, this guy. When I would watch other moms chase after a very active toddler, I would always refer to the child as “busy,” as in, “Wow! He’s a busy one!” After raising two not terribly busy toddlers, I finally got a busy one.
It’s delightful. And exhausting. Delightfully exhausting.
He loves the water, my little guy. I love watching him play in the water. He is focused when near the water, happy and content to just splash away the minutes. Today we splashed away 45 minutes. It looked a little something like this:
For 45 blissful minutes, I didn’t think about anything other than being on the beach with my busy boy. Childhood cancer didn’t enter my thoughts, not even once. Grief wasn’t at my side. My ‘to do’ list wasn’t an issue. The moms with nannies I will surely annoy with an upcoming blog post didn’t factor into those moments. Menu planning and bill paying and blog organizing would all have to wait. Gun violence in Louisiana and Georgia and even my own neighborhood could do without my worries for a little while.
For 45 minutes this morning I was at the beach with my boy and that was all that mattered. What a gift in this crazy, busy, harsh life we all seem to lead. Even the water was with me, it was gentle and calm, barely a ripple breaking its surface.
Aaahhhhhhhh. So this is what peace feels like.
In these rare moments of stillness and quiet without distractions, you are gifted with noticing sea gull prints in the sand, or how the sun glistens just so on the water. You have the space to think about the riches in your life that have nothing to do with money. You breathe the gratitude in and exhale your thanks out slowly, fully.
After a while, though, you feel hot. Unpleasantly hot. And a little sticky, too. Is that pink on your son’s legs? Hmmmm. Should I reapply sunscreen, or gather up our things, wrangle a sure to be annoyed toddler, and head for home? A good indication that it’s time to leave is when the heaviness of climate change dictates your next move.
And just like that, snap, your 45 minute allowance of peace and gratitude is over. But it was lovely, wasn’t it? It was.