I’m supposed to be in a very bad mood this week.
I’m supposed to be pining away for my beloved seashore, complaining about the week that was over in a blink.
Heck, I even made up a name for the disease that myself and other family members suffer when our cherished week together ends..Post Sea Isle Depression Syndrome. PSIDS.
Before the official diagnosis, I suffered mightily as a small child. Driving back over the bridge leaving town, I was always turned around watching the sparkling surface of the ocean disappear, the tears spilling on the vinyl seats of Dad’s Chevy Impala. The smell of the marsh so wonderful rolling into town, now the final kick in my cut-off jean shorts. We would always, (and still do with my kids) roll down the windows and say “marshy smell, marshy smell, marshy smell..mmmmmm!!”, while taking exaggerated snorts of the heavy air .
I continued to suffer for decades, right up to, but not including 2014.
I don’t think you get it..this is a very, very, huge, big deal.
I am not in a bad mood. I am not desperately scanning beach real estate and employment opportunities that move us to the beach, nor am I berating my husband for not buying into all of it.
I returned to work and deflected several comments of “You must be so sad?”..”bet you hated coming back here?”
“Happy to be there, and happy to be here!”..I responded without rehearsal, to the puzzled expressions of a few.
Who am I? I’m not 100% sure..but I think I like her.
Tess is my name and gratitude’s my game.
I’m pretty sure I can pinpoint the moment gratitude came to live in my soul forever too.
It happened in the marsh.
Morning after morning last week, me and my bicycle were pulled away from the ocean that I love so much, away from the crowded beach,the noisy waves,the throngs of boardwalkers and bikers, the lifeguards whistles, and the smells of pizza and fudge. I pedaled over to the marshes..such a tiny island, the distance to the ocean just a couple of blocks, but it may as well been a hundred miles. It is a serenely beautiful and timeless feeling to stand in a marsh..hard to believe I was still on the same planet as the beach frenzy that was whipping up just two blocks away. The seagulls, who appeared to be working the late shift, dotted the marsh, appearing wise and calm..a sharp contrast to their loud, thieving friends, working the morning shift, tormenting children and their ice cream cones ocean-side. The resting marsh gulls seemed to be sharing their secret with me..this was their happy place..sit a spell.
With each marsh sabbatical last week, I pedaled away lighter..happier. That feeling continued over the little bridge, down the highway and right into the operating room where I work.
Odd..this gratitude thing.