My Mother at the Beach

28 days to 50.

I am sick as a dog as I write this so it will be brief. I rarely get sick anymore so when I do it always takes me by surprise. What, me human? I didn’t even go to the gym today. This is serious stuff.

My Mother at the Beach November 2011

My Mother at the Beach November 2011

The photo above was taken almost 2 years ago when my parents came to visit me for Thanksgiving. This was their first trip to see me since I lived in Hawaii when I was 29 years old. They see all 3 of my other sisters a lot, 2 are easily within driving distance and the one who isn’t is still accessible by a very long car ride (and she has the most beautiful daughter in the world).

My live-in boyfriend at the time was a gourmet chef so they ate like Kings and Queens the whole time they were here. This shot was taken when my mother and I went out by ourselves to go to the beach in Santa Monica. My mother LOVES the ocean. When we were children she would clip coupons and shop sales and put all the money she saved in a fund that was earmarked “Her Hawaii fund”. But every year the water heater would break or my sister would need braces or some other urgent financial matter would accost her precious dream of going to Hawaii.

So it was monumental when she, my father, my baby sister (at the time) and my mother’s mother all came to Hawaii to see me 21 years ago. I found a condo for them right on the water with fabulous views and a patio. My mother got up early every morning just to sit on the patio and look out at the ocean.

On this trip she spent about an hour just dipping her feet in the water. She told me when she came back that “If anything happens to your father I just want to find a place by a beach somewhere for a few months while I figure out what to do next.” She questioned me about the live-in boyfriend. I told her I was sure it wouldn’t work, I didn’t like the way he talked to me. She scoffed, “Tell me about it.” This threw me for a loop. I sometimes didn’t like the way my father talked to my mother, but I guess I didn’t realize that she not only was aware of it but that she didn’t like it either. She would later tell one of my sisters how happy she was that she “got Laura all to herself for few hours”, and that “she got to dip her toes in the water over and over again.”

I discovered something new about my mother that day. This photo is my screensaver on my iPhone right now. I want to be reminded that life is never too short to make changes or to find what brings you happiness and joy.

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