Swaying in a hammock with the sound of the gentle breeze rustling through the palms overhead and the waves crashing on the hurricane eroded beach, I am at total peace. Lauren is in my lap soundly snoring with my sweater wrapped all around her salty wet, sandy clothes. The sun sets slowly as we sway. Next to us Sabrina and Ann Marie play games swinging the hammocks high and trying to catch each other. Dad watches them play from a hammock of his own. Somehow this beautiful place with its aqua turquesa can be such a place of peace and serenity.
I have taken a thousand mental photographs this week with my little family in the Mexican Riviera. I wish I could bottle these moments to be opened and enjoyed later again and again. But one thing this trip has taught me is that you really can never go back. I spent time here 15 years ago. It was a wonderful summer living down here experiencing new things and amazing culture. I visited some of the most naturally beautiful places I have ever seen. I have tried to find one of them this trip. But hurricanes and increased tourism traffic have changed the place. It is no longer the incredible, unforgettable, paradisaical place it was in my treasured memories. Still, the area is amazing. It is just not the same as it once was 15 years ago.
Thus, I am savoring this time with my young children here. We could say, “well that would have been more fun with teenagers.” But, I will not say that. It will not be the same trip when they are teenagers. They will not count how many iguanas they see in the water park. They will not chase the waves and run from them as they crash on the shore. They will not be amazed by every bug or so thrilled by free ice cream at the buffet. They will appreciate other things. We will never have this time with them again. We can never go back.
So tonight, I am savoring the now, just as I did 15 years ago as a college girl. I savored the experience I had then and the memories of it still are sweet to me. Tonight I am soaking in the present so that tomorrow I can recall those mental photographs with joy and bring again to my soul the stillness and tranquility of swaying in a hammock with a baby in my belly and a little wonder of a girl sleeping soundly on her soon to be brother with all her family close at hand.