My memory is a funny animal, as I usually can’t remember what I ate the day before, and most conversations blur quickly. But I do have one memory that always stay with me, but why it does is another matter.
I couldn’t have been more than four years old when my parents took myself and my brother ( a mere 18 months younger than I ) on our first family vacation. My three younger siblings were still fragmented dreams of the family my parents wanted to have, and with them only being married a few years, I’m sure this was our first vacation as a young family. We loaded up the car and drove to California.
I’m sure that we went and did the typical excursions, but I don’t remember any of those. I only remember the beach. I was sitting in the sand, watching the waves come precariously close to my little toes. The sun was slowly working it’s way to the other side of the world. My little brother was sitting close to me, making sand castles with our little plastic shovel and pail.
I turned my head back to the motel on the beach where we were staying, the wind lightly whipping my blond locks into my eyes. As I raised my hand to brush the hair out of my face, I saw two people standing there, arm in arm, smiling. My father was surveying the surroundings, soaking in the sunset, the soft waves crashing against the white sand. My mother was looking into his face, and then turned to look right at me, and smiled.
I didn’t get up and run to them. I didn’t motion to my brother to look. I only stared back, and smiled myself.