We recently returned from a seaside vacation, and it was the most fun we’ve ever had as a family. Someday soon I’d like to tell you about our adventure, but today I want to share my favorite souvenir from our travels.
Picture a hidden cove tucked away behind a coastal forest, accessed by a single lane of crumbling road and shrouded in mist on this particular late afternoon. It’s July, but I feel like I’ve slipped onto the cover of a windswept romance novel on a chilly November day.
We tumble out of the car onto the rough pebbled beach. This is nothing like the sunny, golden sandbox-on-the-sea we’d been enjoying thus far. This was mystery, crashing waves, enveloping fog. Spooner’s Cove was the perfect spot for a treasure hunt. Seriously, I took the picture above just to show you.
For hours we sifted through tide-polished pebbles, translucent sea glass, and curious shells – the flotsam and jetsam of the great Pacific Ocean tossed ashore for our examination and enjoyment. My son chose the biggest rocks he could find, his sister sought out tiny seashells to add to her growing collection, my husband explored the rocky outcroppings surrounding the cove, and I meticulously combed the shore for beachy treasures for Julie, my dear friend and fellow mom-in-the-trenches back home.
A smooth gray pebble the size of a nickel housed tinier stones within a round hole worn by the tide – a mother shielding her children from the elements. A beautiful piece of sea glass reminded me that over time, the things which once wounded can become elegant reminders of what we have survived. The brilliant mother of pearl inside a shell spoke to me – don’t retreat so far inside of your shell you never share your loveliness with others. Marriage, motherhood and life are like this beach, I thought: littered with mementos of past struggles and triumphs, brokenness and renewal.
A blue mason jar of rocks, shells and broken glass was the result of my labor. A small but meaningful token of love for the woman who listens, prays, understands, laughs, nods her head and does life and motherhood alongside me. Thank you, Julie, for showing up to play Bunco at MOPS – and for showing up ever since.
By the way, membership matters! Have you considered inviting a mom to MOPS? Make room at the table this fall for a mom who could use a friend (or a break!). http://www.mops.org/try-mops