A Beach Getaway

Spring Break 1At low tide, Rathtrevor Beach stretches away toward the horizon, an enormous length of glistening, wet sand.  In the distance, you can see the Strait of Georgia, and beyond, the snow covered Coast Mountains.  At this time of year, with the wind and the rain, the sky, churning with clouds,  can be nearly as beautiful as the beach.

Spring Break 3It takes ages for us to walk out to the water’s edge, our heads down to avoid the worst of the wind, and navigating around shallow and ever changing tidal pools. But the boys and I, away for  a little Spring Break adventure, venture out as far as we can get, trying to get close to the bald eagle that’s hopping along the tide line.

Spring break 2We’ve been coming up to Parksville and staying in one of the little resorts since the boys were babies. It’s a long-standing family tradition. We walk the beach, rain or shine, we play games, and we spend hours in the pool. Like camping in the summer, it is a family tradition that I didn’t want to give up after my divorce. And so we’ve continued to come up here, just me and the boys. In the early years, it felt overwhelming, as though all I did was cook, clean up, do something to get the boys out of the cabin, and then start cooking again. These days, the two oldest boys cook breakfast, and everyone helps with the dishes. When we head down to the beach, nobody needs a piggyback home. And when we go to the pool, I can sit in the hot tub.

Spring Break 5I’m not sure when being a single parent came to feel normal for me. I’m not sure when that feeling of being overwhelmed disappeared. These days it feels good and healthy and balanced.  It’s just the way it is. And I like it like that.



About Sally

Poet, seeker, author, mom. Celebrating the beauty and mystery that surrounds us and learning to trust in the journey.
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31 Responses to A Beach Getaway

  1. El Guapo says:

    Too damn cold here to go to the beach yet, but I’m hoping the weather turns soon.

    Love the happy smiles in the last pic!

    • May the warmer weather come soon! (It wasn’t exactly balmy for us. The fireplace in the cabin was a big hit!) I’m delighted to have a picture with all four of us smiling. I’m usually behind the camera…

  2. Dane Allison says:

    Traditions like these often become the glue that keeps families together. What wonderful memories you are creating with your boys! Priceless!

    • Thank you for commenting, Dane! I am the camping mom and the mom who takes the boys away for little cottage getaways. They get Mexico and Whistler and Disneyland with their dad. And yet, the things my guys seem to look forward to the most are the things we do every year, the small traditions as you say. I agree that those traditions create glue.

  3. kingmidget says:


  4. Diane C says:

    You and your boys have exactly the same smile! Sometimes it is easier parenting by yourself than to have to negotiate with another adult about what is best. I never really felt like part of a two parent family as my marriage ended so soon after Miyuki was born. As hard as it was sometimes, I still preferred to do it alone.

    • And you’ve done an excellent job, Diane! I feel fortunate that my ex and I have nearly always been on the same page as parents (except where electronic devices are concerned…). In that respect I’ve never felt that I was parenting alone. I think what I’ve found the hardest is the relentless, day to day, bloody hard work of raising kids on my own. Now that they go to their dad’s half time, my life is considerably more balanced.

  5. I like that, walking the beach regardless of the weather. I’ve enjoyed many moments walking in the rain… Some people walk in the rain, others just get wet! 🙂

    • Baz, in this part of the world, walking in the rain isn’t optional. We are born wearing Gore-Tex jackets! But I agree: it can be beautiful to get out when it’s raining, particularly in the woods, where everything is dripping and lush.

  6. Beautiful! Nothing better than being surrounded by 3 handsome young men who love you.

  7. Gorgeous. The Atlantic is calling me now. She’s so close, I sometimes take her for granted. I’ll be paying her a visit this coming week.

    • Good for you, Ellen! I’ve only had the chance to visit the Atlantic while on holiday on the east coast of Canada and the west coast of Europe, so it’s not an ocean I know so well. But those of us who live close enough, should never take our “home” oceans for granted. Such magnificent beauty!

  8. Gorgeous picture!! love it. and you are not single or double, you are just a parent. and a good one.

    • Thank you. For a long time I felt very self conscious about my single mother status, as though I wasn’t quite good enough. And sometimes the weight of responsibility was crushing, particularly when the boys were little, and their dad only took them a couple of weekends a month. These days, things are considerably easier in my world!

  9. Brigitte says:

    Sally, it just looks lovely and I’m so glad you are finding balance. What a great picture of you and your boys – you are a beautiful family. Happy Weekend!

  10. Jerry says:

    A wonderful statement. Life would be so much easier if Mr Maslow hadn’t confused things.

  11. kp says:

    What a lovely family tradition….and how wonderful that you and your kids have adjusted, and become comfortable, with your new family configuration. (Beautiful family by the way!!) Kim

  12. rose says:

    looks grey and windswept and so atmospheric. Something about the sea wind just blows away your problems.

  13. Good on you for making the effort to keep up the tradition. No small feat, there! And at least now the boys are older, so they can ease the workload 🙂

  14. You have a beautiful family and you’re doing a great job!

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