swimming and the ocean
We went to the beach at the end of the day today with the kids. Madeline and I stood at the edge of the water where small wavelets were crashing into our feet. She would get her hands dirty in the sand and then need to wash them again. We threw rocks and she handed me ones to throw as far as I could. One time she handed me some tiny rocks to throw and they rained down into the water making thousands of small splashes. She wanted me to pick her up when bigger waves crashed and because it was fun to be lifted up and spun around she wanted me to pick her up even when there were no big waves. I told her we needed to be brave and I felt empathy with her confronted with the incredible power of the ocean compared with being so small a person. Looking into the water I felt like we were having a family reunion with some ancient embryonic ancestors that long ago split with my genetic tree. Madeline and I came from the ocean some time ago and now we were back with our family to splash around before returning to land again to have a chocolate chip ice cream cone and look at our digital photos.
Among the big developments over the past week - Madeline has learned enough confidence to jump into the water and try to swim to me without a life jacket. It is a lot of flailing and always eventually requires a rescue but it classifies as swimming so I feel like some major new milestone has been reached.