It’s been a long time since my little family and I went anywhere just for fun, to explore coastline or trails. Friday morning finds us sitting beneath an enormous oak tree eating donuts, admiring a salt marsh, and then chatting with a woman about delphiniums in a community garden.
Two years and some into the pandemic, my little family has grown up. We are years past the summer where I took my daughter and a friend canoe camping with a giant teddy bear. Once upon a time, I believed I could keep the chaos of the world distant from my family — impossible, impossible. For these few days, the chaos of the world reigns on while we’ve carved out a small space of Uno and dumplings, rock and sand and ocean, the silliness of leaning over a balcony railing and watching how city folks prize parking spaces.
We’re in a sea of songbirds in these tall maples surrounding our temporary home. As for that chaos — how clearly I remember my own young womanhood and how hungrily I dove into my own share of life, how I embraced the chaos that came my way. I underestimated how hard it would be to shape chaos into creativity; maybe we all misjudges the depths of life. No longer in the Age of Sippy Cups, my daughters beat me at cards. I still win at trivia.