My children, I hope you remember summer.
I hope you remember these sun-soaked, chlorine-scented summer days where the time flows like ripples in the swimming pool around your feet as you kick.
I hope you remember the taste of the Popsicle as it melts down your hand. The sweet, sticky reward for another summer day well spent. No tears when the last bite dissolves on your tongue; instead, giggles when I read you the joke on the stick.
I hope you remember the ease of these summer days. With nowhere to go and nothing to do, we let the day lead us slowly, gradually from one minute to the next. There is no expectation. We are simply living. We are filling each moment with breath. We are honoring the day with the presence of mind that it deserves.
I hope you remember the smiles and the laughter. There is nothing that warms my soul more than honest joy. It takes shape in the two of you. And the way you can spend hours jumping into the pool, floating about, and blowing bubbles—the way you take pride in each step you take towards learning how to swim. You transform before my eyes becoming older and wiser and more capable. Yet, you still erupt in giggles and give big cheesy smiles when Daddy does a cannonball.
I hope you remember me being present with you. Before you came into my life, I rarely put my head under the water. But for you and because of you, I let go. I let go of the need to look a certain way or act a certain way because you will only remember that I played with you in and under and around the water. That I got in and on your level and, to my surprise, experienced a little bit of that same honest joy.
I hope we always have summer memories. I want to burn these days into my mind and onto my skin so that I can carry them with me into the colder, darker days. I want to do this so I can bring them to you when you need to be lifted up. I want the honest joy that we feel in these moments to hold us together even when the ship starts to rock and take on water.