Monday, October 15, 2007

At The Beach

Hot. Dry. Sunny.

The weather could not be better for early August on the southern coast of Maine. My wife, two kids and I walked slowly over the Ogunquit River Footbridge toward the beach. We were weighed down with beach chairs, boogie boards, towels as well as the rest of our beach gear. As we made our decent down the stairs to the beach we surveyed the shoreline for a spot by the water. The tide was high so space on the beach was tight. We found a spot where the tide had peaked and the sand was dry. I set up our umbrella, chairs and towels while my wife played with the boys in the gentle waves.I lay back in one of the chairs and closed my eyes. With my eyes closed my other senses heightened. I could smell the suntan lotion of the twenty something girl with the cute rear lying on a towel behind my chair. I could feel the hairs on my chest stiffen while the slight off shore breeze blew intermittently over my darkening torso, giving me occasional relief from the beating sun. I could hear the faint sound of the Red Sox on the radio, gulls crying, and the voices of my boys frolicking in the waves with their mother. I fell asleep.

I woke up cold. The beach was empty. The air was thick with moisture and it was now overcast. I looked toward the water where my wife and kids had been playing. My four year old son was laying at the waters edge. I ran to him, but my wheels were spinning in the sand. The harder I pumped my legs the slower I moved. His lifeless body rolled back and forth in the sea foam moving with the rhythm of the ocean. I finally reached him and pulled him up onto the beach away from the water. He was cold. I blew into his mouth. He remained lifeless.

I picked him up and hugged him tightly, crying. He rubbed my back and said "Don't cry daddy." I looked him in the eye and asked him "Where is mommy and Peter?". "They walked into the water and kept going. I tried to get them, but the waves knocked me down and I drowned" Matthew said with no emotion."You didn't drown honey, you are hear with me, alive" I assured him."No dad, we're dead!" he insisted."We are alive Matthew! Look at the clouds, breathe the air, look at the waves.""You died trying to save me." Matthew stated matter of factly.

I carried him back to the umbrella and blankets, laid him down and towelled him off. An orange-red maple leaf blew onto the blanket next to my boy. I picked him up, snug in his towel and carried him toward the foot bridge. I looked out at the ocean one last time; the fog was rolling in. The sky looked like it does in late Autumn, as if it could snow at any time. The fog had traveled down the inlet enveloping the end of the bridge near the parking lot. "I love you Matthew" I told him as we headed into the mist.

(I had this dream this past August. It was my first night home after long, but satisfying week on vacation in Maine.)

13 comments:

BloggersDelight said...

Thank you for sharing that dream here, David. We hope that is not a recurring dream.

Opinionated Diva said...

Woooooooooow....that left me with a very eerie feeling.

Certainly would have spooked the hell outta me, were I the one to dream it.

Great read though!

AMINAH LOVE'S SOUL said...

This made me shed a tear. Wow. I hope this will never become a reality. I have a six year old son, whom I love with all my heart, I can't imagine. You write beautifully. Thank you for sharing this dream with us.

God bless & protect you and your family always.

Please feel free to check out my blog.

GOODENess said...

moving... profound... in awe...

nikki said...

wonderfully rendered. that's a scary dream though...

Mizrepresent said...

My God, that is sad and scary. My most scariest nightmares of that of losing my children. I have woke up crying because them...it' a love that is so great, so enduring, so overwhelming, that life seems lost without it.

Ms. Da-ish said...

wow, I'm wondering how did you feel when you woke up. I would have been on alert forever and a day. just the thought of that gives me goose bumps

David Sullivan said...

The "Fam" is OK, no deaths, no drownings.

Strangely, the dream was actually comforting. Even though we were supposedly both dead, I felt his warmth "snug in his towel" and his love, so although dead, not alone. It was also comforting to know the my wife was with my other son

Miz: You summed up my feelings about parenthood best!

Thanks for all of your comments!

CapCity said...

David, I'm so glad I came by after u expressed that this dream comforted u. not being a parent, yet i just imagined being frightened at waking to my baby lying in the surf. dreams always fascinate me!

Don said...

I enjoyed the read, and to co-sign an above comment of both yours and Miz, I too have had dreams of my daughters where I cried but it wasn't a painful cry - if you can understand what I'm saying. It was this "warm feeling." I can't really explain it.

Also your post is interesting because a 24 year old friend of our family lost his life this weekend in a swimming accident. He survived his stay in Iraq, came home less than a year ago, bought a home, and now he's dead.

It aint promised.

David Sullivan said...

Don: Wow, that sucks about your family's friend. We need to get everyone home from Iraq as life is precarious enough..

Cap: The only thing in that was real was the 20-something girls rear. Why couldn't the whole dream been about that!!

CapCity said...

Dannngg, Don - that is so sad about your family friend...my prayers go out to his family & friends.

David - u r a HOOT!!! tell the truth: the comforting part of the dream was the 20 yr. old bootayyy! i won't call u r.kelly - it's okay...she was legal... LOL!

David Sullivan said...

I am an R Kelley fan! LOL