Tuesday, July 27, 2010


BB's first view of the ocean was this weekend shortly after we pulled into San Diego, threw our stuff into the hotel room, and changed him into some jammies and a clean diaper. We then drove down to Moonlight Beach in Encinitas to introduce BB to Mama's most peaceful place -the beach. BB inhaled the damp, salty air and gazed at the water curling and crashing and then rushing towards us. I like to think that he was silently realizing the vastness before him. It was evening and the tide was high, and a few bigger waves pushed the edge of the ocean quickly towards our feet and J and I laughed and screamed as we ran from the water.

I don't know if it was the screaming and running that did it, or if BB came to understand that he was in the presence of something big and powerful, the likes of which he had never encountered, and did not know how to respond other than in fear. I guess it was probably the first one. Either way, BB's face screwed up in sad sobs as tears flowed down his soft cheeks and he clung tightly to me, his cries getting louder if I moved towards the water.

We left Moonlight then to meet some friends, but returned the next day with beach blankets, towels, sunscreen, and even a tent where BB could have a break from the sun (although the sun was nowhere to be found - we blamed the overcast weather on Comicon's attendees, who J said probably used science to drive away the sun for the weekend so that their pasty, normally-only-screen-lit skin wasn't scathed with any Vitamin D). Despite the fog, the air was warm and the day seemed promising, other than the baby screaming on my hip. It took several tries for BB to allow me to put him down on the strange soft, uneven surface, but he finally relaxed and started playing with his ball on the blanket. J and I quickly realized though that if his ball rolled off the blanket, he would squat at the edge of the blanket and reach, reach, reach for it, but would not venture onto the sand! After we tried to encourage him to walk on the sand a few times, we realized as I read my book and J ocean-gazed, that this was a blessing in disguise! BB was trapped on the blanket, not running all over the beach, requiring one of us to chase him! We could relax! Read! Sit! "Yes, BB, sand is scary," was our joke. It was wonderful. He just played with us and around us and we appreciated the invisible fence that contained him until the air chilled and it was time to head to lunch.

The next day we went to Carlsbad State Beach after driving around my hometown, found a killer parking spot, and settled onto the sand (sans tent). Shortly after our arrival, BB realized that the sand was not so scary after all, and ventured off the blankets, with Daddy in tow. But anytime BB faced the ocean, he would stop dead in his tracks as soon as he saw it. He wouldn't walk towards the water, only away from it! We carried him down to the water and built sandcastles in the mud, but BB hated it when the cold water rush over his feet. I finally carried him into the water and he got splashed and cried, so we went back to playing on the sand. Finally at the end of the day, after much encouragement from Daddy, BB would walk on the sand towards the direction of the water. Not to go to the water, mind you, but he wasn't turning tail to run away from it.

If we'd only had one more beach day, I just know we would have had him surfing.

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