Sunday, April 8, 2012

Crashing waves

Home from ten days away. Away to the wild, wet, pacific west coast. Sleeping in till 10 every day. Walks on the beach. A few campfires. Listening to the radio Eating good food. Cozy in our camper.

This is, perhaps, my last spring break for some time. Retirement is only 2 months away. Wow. I think I will start calling it a sabbatical. Retirement, at my age, doesn't sound right. It doesn't ring 'true', as my mother would say.

It was peaceful. The weather report was for rain, rain, and more rain. We had one day of pouring rain, but it was good because I did all my marking. Silver lining and all that stuff.

Mostly the days were a mix of cloud and sun, and the last two days full on sun.

And every day was accompanied by the sound of the Pacific Ocean. Not so peaceful, the name that is. The sound, to me, is very soothing.

Perhaps it is the repetition. Repeating, but not the same. Surging, receding, ebbing, flowing. Each wave different from the last, each one bringing a promise, perhaps a surprise.

We saw a murder of crows digging in the sand. Each one of them digging in the sand. A mystery. An intelligence. A reminder that I don't know about alot of things. I only know that those waves, those beaches, that sand brings me peace.

I was occasionally struck by melancholy on this trip. Suddenly, like a rogue wave, it would wash over me. I would turn to my husband in despair. The tears would flow. It is a simple answer to say it was low blood sugar - although eating would help. I think it is more omnipresent than that

On that wild Pacific coast I feel small and insignificant. I feel far away from family and friends. I feel - well - lost. And yet in the losing of myself I find something infinitely greater.

My faith is always with me these days. As I pray for the health of my loved ones, for the safety of my loved ones, for the peace of the world.

I can't keep them all safe under my wings, but I can keep them safe in my heart.

My husband asked if the pounding waves would become persistent, annoying, day in and day out if we chose to live by such an ocean.

I don't think so. The sound reminds me minute by minute, tide by tide, of God. God is in the details.

I heard a question asked of a rabbi, the father of nine children, when he was left paralysed after a car accident.

"I don't ask why did God let this happen to me. I ask what does he want me to do now?"

So, I think, for me, those waves were asking: What do you want to do now? The melancholy is simply an opening to the infinite possibilities - as large as the ocean, as perfect as each wave, as cleansing as my baptism.

It is no coincidence that this is Easter Sunday. The Resurrection and the Life. Looking forward to Pentecost.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Mary-Anne. You are so full of thoughts and questions and the wisdom of someone who has lived and loved.

    I agree with you about the sound of the ocean.

    Living so close to the ocean has been a dream come true for me after all those years in the Okanagan. I find the sea peaceful, yes, even during storms, just knowing that while the waves are crashing and thrashing but deep down in the water it is calm.

    What do you want to do now?


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