April Swim

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A little later than in years past, but I did take my first dip yesterday.

Sure, it was in the sound and not the ocean, but I’m pretty sure that counts.

There is something incredibly powerful about that first dip. A sort of baptism, maybe. The salt and the cold shrinking every pore of your body, making you acutely aware of the water’s power.

I shallow dove into the water while two teenagers in sweatshirts looked on. They must have thought I was crazy.

But the water was so inviting, the evening sun sparkling in the west. The length of beach empty except the teenagers, strolling with their cameras, hoping to capture the beauty of the moment.

I considered waiting a little longer, another month, maybe before diving in. Or waiting until the wind and the tiny grains of sand relented.

But I thought of the long winter (which wasn’t as painful this year as years past), and the sound of the wind rattling the windows in the old house I’d been living in. I thought of the same beach in summer, packed full of umbrellas and beach chairs and children and dogs and tourists and the din of their chatter.

And I dove in.