Yesterday I felt brave in the Pacific Ocean waves. They were wilder and more fierce than Long Island Sound, but the ground felt soft and sturdy beneath my feet. I waded deeper into the water, watching pelicans do their hilarious face-plants around me. I thought about a recent text conversation with a girlfriend in pain; in transition. “These moments,” I had said “Are like waves. They can be huge, and scary, and sometimes painful. It may feel like youwill drown. But you will not. Mama Ocean will not do that to you.” I felt so in the flow and full of joy…until the water tugged at my feet and disappeared around me as a 15 foot wave swelled over my head. Panic. I turned my back and jumped. What felt like bricks pelted my body and pushed me down, water filling my nose and esophagus. We all have these stories right? Fun until the ocean knocks us over? Yes. I survived, got up, noticed that my sunglasses had been ripped from my face. Obviously. I should have known better. Shit. Okay, they weren’t my best pair. All was fine, except now I was afraid of the waves. None of my woo woo “Mama Ocean won’t drown you” advice was holding up. Waves would appear and I would freeze, unable to decide: Jump, dive, ride? I just started saying “no” and resisting before getting pummeled. Eventually I gave up. I literally said “I’ve had enough” to the sea and walked to the sand, defeated, knowing I had failed to learn some kind of lesson. Mama Ocean took my joy, my r&r, and my sunglassee (which I really liked, to be honest).
Today I walked back to the beach at the end of the day, right before sunset. My intention was just to put my toes in the water, cool off, and not fight the ocean at all. I walked straight from the street where I’m staying to the water. At my feet, where the ocean met the sand…
Some rust, lots of sand, otherwise in tact and undeniably mine.
More than 24 hours of tides and tourists later, she returned my sunglasses to me, sending them not to the exact spot where I lost them but to the spot where I returned.
My friend with whom I’ve been texting about this wants to know what I make of this.
All I can assume is that I have a relationship with The Universe that goes beyond my understanding. And when the ocean rips something away from you it might actually be engaging you in conversation, alerting you to its power, and letting you know you have an intensely magical ally, after all.
The metaphor is so rich I can hardly make sense of it! I look forward to all of your comments.