The Sea of Life

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          As I write this, I have been so moved by pictures I’ve been looking at this evening, photos taken by beautiful souls. Of seaside cliffs, of the sea, of places where winter lingers in its final farewells. It was one of those times when I allow myself daydreams of a new home, a new life – by the sea, no less! But more importantly, away from this town of a thousand eyes, freedom to work and live as I wish, no longer beholden to those who will never understand.

          I wrote to someone today, remembering a day some 8 years before. I was attending a course in a little town by the sea. It was the first time I had been away from my young family. Even as the pangs of mother’s guilt tore at me for enjoying this time away, I had nurtured hopes that the course I was attending would herald a change in my professional life, give me some hope, some measure of joy, because as much as I loved my family with all my heart, the darkness of depression was biting deeper and deeper into me. At that time, I thought perhaps an opened window in my career would let in some light and that it would make life livable.

          Late one evening during the course, after a walk on the beach, I sat on one of those wooden beach sleepers, and watched a storm slowly roll in. From the time I was a child, I have always been enthralled by the sea. The crash and slosh of its waters on the shore and salt-washed rocks were the only sounds strong enough to still the ever present tumult within me. That day in that little town by the happy sea, I realised that I had not outgrown this childhood love. And that the power the sea had over me had not waned either.

          On my last morning there, during an break, I went out to the beach once more. I knew passing eyes were curiously eyeing me, wondering what a formally dressed woman was doing sitting by the beach at past 10 in the morning, staring out at the swell and fall of the sea as it ran with a lover’s grace towards the sandy shores. I was a deeply insecure person back then, and it took a lot to get past what others thought of me, and to remain by the sea for a while more. But I’m glad I did. When I think of that moment now, I think that in my heart, I knew that even if I did return to the seaside for holidays with my family and such, I would not come back this way, in this same short-lived freedom from the call of home.

          How true! 8 years or more have passed and with it, every manner of opportunity to make something of myself. Still, even if a part of me is disappointed it turned out this way, bitterness finds no real hold within me; I chose family over everything else and given a chance to re-live those days, I’d do the exact same again.

          Such decisions, like everything else, alter the path that leads from every fork in the road. For some, it leads to something new, an unexpected bounty that refreshes flagging spirits. For others like me, some of our dreams fall further and further behind in the rearview mirror, increasingly eclipsed by the present, challenging, difficult at times, yet utterly beautiful too.

          It is what it is, as Gary of Bereaved Single Dad is wont to say. You do the right thing whether it feels right or not, no matter how strong the lure of dreams to choose a different path.

          And like the sea, life comes to carry you on.

 

10 comments

    1. I agree… the ‘what if’ way can sometimes bring unnecessary pain because we toy with something we have no power over.
      Some years ago, I believe the Holy Spirit taught me this: in making a decision, choose life – as God would will it. It has served me well especially when fog is too thick.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I roamed and roamed through the lands of your blog last night, Carol. I felt the Lord speak something to my spirit through the photos and your words. Through each one, He spoke in a wordless whisper, urging me to hope and to hope on.
      You have an uncommon gift, Carol. He gives the best to the heart that loves.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Okay, this made me tear up. My objective with my blog is to keep as positive as possible and to allow the Divine One to use me as He (or She) will to reach hearts and souls. You have given me such a beautiful gift here. Of late I’ve been wondering if any of it matters. I think God just spoke to me through you.

        I thank you sincerely for your kind words. May blessings overflow in your life.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. All choices come with sacrifice, and I think we simply choose what we are willing to sacrifice. I’m glad you didn’t sacrifice your family, and that you know you made the right choice. Your faith has guided your life, which means you’re making the right choices, in my opinion.

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    1. Today, I finally see that I chose right because back then, my choices didn’t always make me happy. I often felt trapped and frightened and angry. But even then, the path for me was pretty clear.
      I guess I was being guided from above.

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  2. I am reminded here of a verse from Proverbs 16:9: “In his heart, a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.” I too, love the sea…and I love the wind that often comes in the way of sea breezes. This breeze is captivating because it often goes this way and that…it wanders so to speak in a mysterious way. Life itself is mysterious, and there are so many frolicking breezes, so many distractions. In regard to our faith, we must constantly focus. We must continuously be reminded that our God who can calm the sea is the only One who can ever bring us peace. When I am uncertain if I have taken the right steps, I must trust the God who knows the steps I should take. Trust is always the key that sets me free and allows me to enjoy the mystery…Also, from Colossians 1:7: “He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.

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