Grey clouds loom and the cool breeze bites my face. The ocean whips into white points, hungrily reaching for something to devour.
I dare not let myself go near it today.
Instead, I sit by the old anchor nestled in the first tufts of grass at the top of the beach.
It’s cold and uncaring, impersonal and no company at all, but it does give me some sense of security. I envy its stability. It knows its place. It only needed to be itself to do what it was meant to do.
Some days the sea is gentle, the small waves lapping at my feet as I hug my knees and look into the distance, wishing for something different, longing for things to change.
It seems so much less sinister than it really is.
Some days, I sit on the shore and watch it heave and crash, knowing its force but thankful that it’s not turning me upside down, dumping me mercilessly and leaving me with little but pockets full of sand to show for it.
I’ve been there. Struggling to breathe – no! to hold my breath, survive, stay afloat. A few seconds to gulp greedily at the air and then I am gone again, losing all sense of direction, being engulfed; the plaything of the waves. I’ve limped from the sea and collapsed on the shore, wondering how I didn’t see the breaker that overwhelmed me.
It’s odd that the cold doesn’t numb the senses. It sharpens them, heightens the pain, deepens the wounds.
Some of those wounds still haven’t healed.
I feel him before I see him. He’s watching me, knowing where I have come from, and understanding the storm that is threatening.
I remember when he rescued me from the sea. It nearly won. I was almost gone.
Then I was claimed by his strong arms, beautiful hands, lifting me, carrying me, wrapping me in his protective embrace. His warmth radiated into the saddest, loneliest places within me. The softly spoken words of reassurance – he’s got me, nothing to fear, I’m safe now.
He is beside me now, his arm around my back, his strength protecting me from the elements.
He’s got me. Nothing to fear. I’m safe now.
The tide recedes except for the droplet that weaves a solitary path down my cheek as it chases after the sea from whence it came.