We are back. Round trip airfare, round trip car rides, 7 days on the beach and 1943589923 pieces of luggage later… I’m still finding mysterious sand on the floor of our bedroom.
I stole these photos from facebook because I am being lazy. The baby on the beach = the baby in the front pack. Front facing our inside facing was the question of each trip out. Well, is he going to nap? Maybe. When we didn’t think he would, he did.
And when we thought for sure he would… well…
He wanted to see the world.
I spent the majority of the time being tired. Really tired. It feels weird to be so tired while being on vacation at the same time. And there were times, real and true times, that I wished the baby would just go away. I didn’t want to have to deal with his frustrations or his crying or his need to be held holdmenowgoddamnit! I just wanted to hang out and play rummy cube or catan or freaking plants v zombies 2. I wanted to walk on the beach without bringing a diaper bag and a front back, and making sure we had extra clothes JUST IN CASE, do we have to turn back now? Do you think he is hungry? Maybe he will sleep and we can walk a little bit further… Sometimes I wanted it to be how it was, before everything changed. Before I was a grown up. When it was just about jumping waves and staying out in the ocean until I was nearly frozen. Blowing up floaty toys and riding them out into the surf. Having a bath at the end of the day with a heated towel, two breakfasts because I was up with the sun and running out to the ocean with the dog on the leash and then back again.
But it will never be like that again.
In every day life most things feel the same, but when you revisit childhood hot spots, when you actually live out the vacations you only talked about as a kid (One day, Lauren, we’ll come here with your husband and your child(ren) and we’ll play on the beach and play rummy cube and eat seven layer cookies just like this.), when you plan something a year in advance and then here it is! And there it went! That’s when reality hits you. That’s when reality hits me. And I cry when I hear my parent’s horn honking goodbye as they drove out on our last day at the beach house.
It happened. We beached. We beached as family and extended family. As parent to an infant and parent to an adult and grandparent and husband and wife and child and infant and and and. We smore’d and we walked and we barefooted. We took turns comforting the baby. We checked for budding new teeth (none really), we marveled at the amount of formula consumed, I watched as the life I had as the child to my parents moved further and further away from the present.
It isn’t how it used to be. The beach is not the same, it changes daily and yearly. The coast transforms itself again and again and again. We are all here and then some and things are different.
But it is good, it is how it should be. My parents are approaching retirement, Kamel and I are pushing forward (always forward, against mountains sometimes) with our own family, our own adventures. The baby gives great cuddles. He is increasingly sleeping nearly all through the night. There were steaks and bratwurst, beer and snacks, sand dollars and sunscreen.
We will talk about how my mom dropped a marshmallow into the fire, we will compare how my parents chop wood. It will forever and ever be the baby’s first trip to the beach. Kamel’s first trip to the Oregon Coast. We did what my parents and I have talked about since before I was 9, 10, 11, 12 plus. We rented a house for a week with my husband and baby and it happened just like we said it would. A fire on the patio, board games at the kitchen table. There is still sand in one pocket of my jacket to prove it.