Life is not always rosy but when you’re on vacation and your child does not bolt at every opportunity but instead turns when you call his name and miraculously, comes running — well, life is pretty damn picturesque. This means that going to the beach isn’t just one big exasperating John-chase. You can sit and take in the sand and surf and appreciate how magnificent it all is.
Last year, John took a cast of Sesame Street characters everywhere he went. It was a struggle to find a bag to contain them all. In that regard, we are fortunate this summer because he has one lone traveling companion: an Elmo finger puppet. They have lots of private conversations.
We are at the beach visiting my dad — their Grampy. It’s a miracle he’s here at all. Six weeks ago he went to the doctor complaining of allergies and ended up on the table having sextuple bypass surgery. Who has ever heard of more than five? He is so lucky, they said, it was only a matter of time, they said.
The truth is, we are so lucky.
I try not to think of my mortality or the mortality of those I hold close and dear — you do this especially if you’re a parent to a child with special needs — but sometimes the river comes rushing to meet you. As we waited for the news that my dad was in the clear, I thought of all the times I’ve moaned and groaned about our busy crazy life — how hard it is sometimes. And it is hard.
But I’d rather the difficult, the challenging, the frustrating, if it means I get moments like this with my family and my kids and my husband. I’d rather the life hard won as long as the people I love are here by my side. My dad has always been by mine.
Our days are still full of tough moments, no doubt! But here, on the Sound, we are just happy to be alive.