When the kids were small we were down here nearly every day. Wading, swimming, foraging. But as they’ve grown, it’s harder to find the time.
Lupine has been down to the creek swimming with friends a few times already this summer, but Sage and I have barely gotten our feet wet. So yesterday afternoon, when the lunch dishes were washed and the heat was still heavy in the air, we walked to the creek and jumped in.
“1, 2, 3, 11!” The inexplicable dunking call that we have shared since they were young was shouted by all, and under I went. So cold! The spring-fed creek water took my breath away, and our laughter (and my screams) echoed against the hills.
When they are grown, will I wander here alone and whisper “1, 2, 3, 11” before slipping beneath the surface on the hottest summer days? Or will my iced dunking days be over, memories tucked into my heart alongside cosleeping, breastfeeding, and babywearing? A chapter fondly recalled, but long past.
Truly, I hope I never quit. This painfully cold dunk each July helps keep me alive (in body and in spirit). It jolts me from the mundane and roots me firmly where I belong: here, with my feet in the mud and my face grinning up at the sun.
It’s a baptism into the waters of home; my sanctuary, my sacred place. It is my meditation, my joy, and my song.
This creek runs through all of us, and binds us to this place and to each other. How lucky we truly are.