The Beach

The Beach

National Health Blog Post Month, Day 22: Be present. Describe something peaceful with as much sensory imagery as you can. What are the sights, sounds, scents, and feelings?NHBPM_2011_Day22

Peace, in my world, is that elusive thing that peeks its head out from around a corner every once in awhile, letting you have only a short glimpse, before quickly scampering off into the chaotic wilds of the land of To Do. I am one of those people who packs their day full of stuff to do (often unintentionally) from the moment my feet hit the ground in the morning to when I set my alarm and turn my light off at night. My days are packed with diabetes concerns, work concerns, BG tests, tasks and things I need to get accomplished, phone calls, emails, spreadsheets, web pages, beeping CGM’s, carb counting, questions and answers, and even unknowns.

Lately, I really haven’t found a peaceful, blissful place where I’m not bombarded with a list of things that I can’t get my mind off of that I should be doing instead of enjoying the serenity. But I know a few places where I am the most at ease, and I hope I can get there to spend some time before long.

The beach at dusk and night is one of my favorite places to get away from it all. Even if for only a few minutes. I like the beach during the day, don’t get me wrong. I love it. But at night, it’s different.

At the beach at night, the waves seem to crash just a little more gently. The breeze seems to blow just a little more calmly. The darkness helps to retire the beachgoers from the day, replacing them with footprints, disappearing sandcastles, and subtle reminders that yes, this beach belongs to all, but the small bit of solitude that remains is mine.

I don’t have to share the beach at night. A cell phone or an iPad has no place here. There is no light to read a book, a newspaper, or a magazine. There is only the subtle reflection of the setting sun on the water, painting the sky a series of pinks, purples, oranges, and gold. Or maybe it’s the vision of the moon slowly climbing its way out of the water at the edge of the horizon, giving off a soft pale glow, and letting gravity take the water as it rises higher and higher in the sky.

The sounds of the beach are hypnotizing. The waves crashing against the shore in a never ending loop have the nature of the stars, in that they are nearly impossible to count and keep track of. They keep repeating, with no story of where they have come from, or where they are going next. The water slapping against a pier, or a seawall, adds a backbeat rhythm for the waves to keep time to.

The smell in the air is crisp, clean, yet salty. The lingering sweet smell of suntan lotion hovers around the public areas. Along the pier you can smell the freshness in the daily catches of the fisherman, who are still at their task of gathering just enough fish for dinner, and leaving behind just enough for tomorrow.

If you close your eyes, and take a deep breath in, you can feel the energy of the day slowing down, wrapping up the fond memories and new beginnings of every person’s day at the beach before you. As you breathe out, the world is replaced by calmness unlike any other, and a feeling of life all around, but moving at a slower pace, with beautiful deliberateness.

You can stay for a moment, or you can stay for hours. The beach at night has no time clock. It is just there, winding down from a long day in the sun, and glad that you stopped long enough to give it a chance to share.

That is my peaceful.

The Beach

This post was written as part of National Health Blog Post Month (NHBPM) – 30 health posts in 30 days: http://bit.ly/vU0g9J

National Health Blog Post Month

3 comments

  1. Lovely! I miss the beach. My parents moved me from southern CA to the mountains of AZ when I was 16. I tried not to hate them for too long. There is truly something magical about the beach. I used to love the beach in winter when it was mostly deserted for many of the same reasons you mentioned. This is a lovely post. Thank you.

  2. I’m also a beach girl, though I’ve not lived there in over 30 years. I do need running water nearby me, though, or I literally go crazy. On Long Island, the beach in winter was a magical place where few people went — but with no people there, the sand was blown into mini-dunes between the boardwalk and the water, covered with mini-icecaps of snow. The air was crisp, layered with not-quite-ice crystals of not-frozen salt water…

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