I’ve almost drowned three times. I’m a terrible swimmer. I am an adult woman with four children who swim better than I do — and yet I still pinch my nose under water and doggy paddle. My resilient children swim like fish in any temperature. Even though I may someday be taking swimming lessons with my 3-year old, this post is actually about some incredible elderly “wave-jumpers,” as I have named them. It’s bizarre and wonderful at the same time.
On our last holiday, my family took a trip to Spain, and my kids were practically hurling themselves at the beaches. As I got cozy in the sand to keep an eye on the crew, I noticed about a half-dozen elders on a mission in their bathing suits. Together, they marched up to the shore, repositioned their swim caps, and readjusted their goggles. Look past my kids in the pictures above. There they are.
My eyes were fixed, and I was ready to see some enviable swimming action, since mine involves pinching my nose and some unflattering flailing. Yet after entering the ocean, they just stood there, motionless.
Truthfully, I was so confused. They just stared ahead at the oversized waves. When the wave pushed them, they weren’t afraid — even if they had to take a step back to rebalance or boldly stepped a few feet forward, deeper. Sometimes, they would surprisingly dive into the bigger waves. Yet after all of that commotion, they always returned to their original spot in the chilly water and dug their feet back into the sand. What were they thinking? What was the purpose?
After a few weeks of trying to make sense of it all, it became clear — it changed everything. You see, these women were conquering the waves. They fearlessly stared at an overwhelming obstacle yet were at complete peace. Even though each wave pushed and pulled them, they always counterbalanced and became even stronger. For those women, the ocean served the same purpose, but their unique position in the sand and approach to the wave was personal.
So what does this all have to do with me? For me, these wise women encapsulated life. No matter our background, age, size, or color, we all stand the same — we stand together in the similar journey of living, growing, loving, and evolving, but our experience is always unique. Each moment is a wave. Even when life may knock us down or sneak up in an undercurrent — we live, we learn, and we reposition our feet for the next wave.
After living abroad in a few different countries and traveling globally, my absolute perspective has changed. We are all so beautiful, so different, and have so much to offer in our individual journeys.
You see — we are all like these wave-jumpers. Every experience is merely a moment to absorb, a wave approaching that will pass, with impressionable hindsight to teach us. My life is an open book. I love to help others when and how I can. Most who know me have labeled me, “Supermom.” I’m not, I just try my best and keep on couterbalancing and learning. I don’t judge. I don’t criticize. I don’t live with regret or guilt. It’s refreshing and it’s my personal masterpiece.
My life is a mix of all things and all emotions, mostly humor. So I invite you to be the fly on the wall of my open Confessional, filled with some candid mess-ups, laughs, and life lessons… stay tuned.
Originally published at superflysupermom.com on February 27, 2016.
Originally published at medium.com