I am standing in front of the Atlantic Ocean, mesmerized by the push and pull of the waves. How do all of the molecules of water know their place? They gather in groups and increase and increase still more until they erupt in a blanket of bubbles and murmurs, teasing the toes of people walking by. It's the same pattern every five seconds. Push and pull, gather and erupt, mound and level.
While the ocean is happily dancing, there is a greater force at work which is causing the ocean to be fuller, to rise higher for hours and hours until it needs to deflate. What an odd force. It's such magic, those great waters.
I miss the ocean. I miss the sound of the waves. They deafen me to my troubles.
When I was twenty years old and navigating some greater questions of direction in life, I went to the ocean and sat for hours in her presence, watching her tides pull. I let her strength wash away all the unnecessary in my mind until I was left with the essence of why I was there. I didn't leave until she made me a child again: small, innocent, playful, simple.
I brought so many questions to the ocean. Why am I so sensitive? Why do I love this man? Why am I so awkward? Why do I overthink things? It was here at the ocean where I shed my girlhood and accepted my adult self. I didn't pray to the ocean. I just left my worries there. The ocean is great and simple, cleansing and terrible. I wasn't the same person after meeting it.
Today I am in an ocean of laundry, with equally rhythmic tides. Mondays the tide is high with four or five loads of clothing and towels and little girl socks strewn on the living room floor. The washing machine whirs all morning long, pulsing with soap and life and dirt.
The dishes are the same, mounting high in the sink, then increasing more exactly when my children are home from school. The counters are layered with schoolwork and sticky peanut butter.
I don't despise the constant chores, but I can't say they soothe me or make me childlike. They require a certain amount of effort.
A responsible person goes grocery shopping and chops vegetables and minds the tides of running a household.
A person who wants to be made new spends time being small, unnecessary, plain. She heeds the vastness of the ocean.