Beautiful Beach copyright by Esther** via Flickr.com
We just got back from the beach. But not the beach above. That would have entailed flying. No, instead we drove to a local beach in Delaware where the brown muddy waters are about as inviting as an ice bath in a blizzard and the crowds of people with their blankets and chairs encroaching upon your space could have made Mother Theresa a sinner. But it was the beach, and it was for the kids.
We debated whether or not to go at all due to Youngest's walking pneumonia. But Oldest was finally getting better and Angus had been all cured a week earlier and they would have been crushed if we had cancelled. So we went back to the doctor and got his professional opinion. He said we could go provided we monitor her progress and watch out for any problems with her breathing. What he failed to mention was that the disease turned our normally even tempered, happy-go-lucky, sweet 4 year old into a nasty, angry, whiny, screaming, irritating, demanding, foul horrid monster. Everyday there would be a minimum of two horrendous temper tantrums lasting anywhere from 20 minutes to over an hour. Where she would scream, howl, rant and rave like a madman for some perceived offense, like asking her to pee before leaving for the beach. Unfortunately my husband is as stubbornly pigheaded to get his way and when Da Man and Youngest would go head to head, the rest of us all suffered, including our family friends who came on vacation with us. The only good news about her ugly temper tantrums was that the doctor had asked me to make sure she would do lots of deep breathing exercises to work her lungs and keep them from collapsing. All her shrieking and screaming gave her all the deep breathing she needed for the week.
In an interesting bit of karmic energy, on our last day at the beach, Youngest had a singularly bad meltdown right on the beach. A friend of the girls had accidentally kicked sand in Youngest's face and had gotten in her eye. No amount of consoling and bribing would settle her and she refused to leave the beach, instead proceeding to shriek bloody murder about her eye. For nearly an hour after finally shutting up, she would continue to whine, sulk, brood and be particularly nasty to her family and friends. She finally fell asleep for a nap under the umbrella and me and Da Man sat on chairs right behind her, revelling in the semi-quiet.
The waves had been acting up, forcing us to move our blankets back earlier, but we were definitely on high ground and in a spot that the waves couldn't get us. Our blankets were at the top of a high incline safe from the waters. That is, until a huge monster wave built up in the sea, racing for the shore, at a good five feet height over the heads of those standing waist high in the waters. Angus had gone inside with my friend so I looked to see where Oldest and my friend's son were. They were standing halfway between where the water was supposed to stop and our blankets. The wave when it hit them, came up to their armpits and thundered by up the incline and onto the blankets where Youngest was sleeping. The split second that I realized the wave was coming at us, I had jumped out of my seat, reaching for Youngest, but I was a second too late and the wave rushed over her. The scream she emitted is one I will never forget and hope never to hear again. I could not have gotten to her faster, the wave was too fast for me. But I did grab her just as the wave hit so she didn't actually swallow any of it.
The monster wave reached nearly to the boardwalk, it was so big. The entire beach was filled with shocked people picking up the mess the waters had made of their stuff. Everyone's stuff got washed several feet away. It could have been worse. The undertow was pretty bad and could have swept Oldest and others into the sea, but it didn't. My cell phone got corroded and my camera got f**ked up, but my pictures were safe and my smartchip card was fine. No one can control Mother Nature. I'm just glad it wasn't worse. We were quite lucky.
Youngest is still a little cretin at least once a day, but we are hoping and praying that she snaps out of it as she gets completely cured. Otherwise, I will go completely mad. While we were at the beach, I had no wireless access and my laptop got screwed up trying to get the foreign wireless access so I am now working off my kids computer until my laptop gets fixed. Another headache I shall have to deal with. Sigh. But at least things, I hope, are starting to normalize. If not, don't be surprised to read a headline, Crazed Mother of 3 climbs Washington Monument with bare hands and suction cups singing "You are my sunshine" and flinging a variety of different snack foods and juice boxes at the crowd below.