Sometimes when I have a hectic week and I'm feeling a little overwhelmed, I go the beach, sit in the sand and watch the waves roll in as I relax.
I do some of my best thinking during those times.
On a recent morning, I looked outside and instead of seeing gloom, I saw the sun shining bright. I just knew this would be the perfect morning to sit in the sand and reflect on my busy—but productive—week.
I threw a towel on the sand, and hugging my bare knees, I made myself comfortable. The water was glassy with mellow little sets of waves rolling in and washing onto the sand. These were not good waves for surfing, but they were lovely for watching.
The sandpipers ran along the shore, stopping long enough to poke their long beaks into the sand for a meal of unsuspecting sand crabs.
Each time the water came up on the shore, the thin-legged birds would run to drier sand only to turn around and chase the retreating water for a chance at more food.
As I looked out to the ocean, I noticed only two people in the water. One guy was on a stand-up paddleboard. He was pretty far out and cruising around at a leisurely pace while soaking in the sun.
Another guy was just getting into the water with his bodyboard. He also spent most of his time paddling around.
It seemed like this was a great day for a swim in the sea.
I was mesmerized as I watched the small waves rolling in, one after another. The water beckoned me to enter and wash away all traces of a hectic week.
I decided just to get my feet wet—maybe that would curb my desire to jump in.
The water was a cool 66 degrees, but seemed colder than I thought it should feel for this time of the year. My feet began to hurt, but the chilly water soon numbed them. I inched my way deeper into the water until my knees were also numb.
It was then that I saw the perfect wave. It was bigger than all of the others that had come in, and I knew I wouldn't see another like it for a while.
I couldn't stop myself—and I really didn't want to—so I seized the moment and dove into the wave. I loved the feeling of the water flowing over me in one big rush.
The contrast of the cool water on my warm skin gave me a small shiver while underwater. Soon I rose to the surface and saw another wave ready to break. With a smile on my face, I dove under the water again.
I swam in the ocean as though this were my own private beach—as if not another soul was around—and I didn't have a care in the world. It was truly exhilarating, even if the feeling was only temporary.
I swam around until my parking meter was about to expire; that was the reality check I needed to get out of the water. Although I was a little sad to leave the ocean, I know I have many busy weeks to come and many more opportunities for beautiful moments like this.