"Stumble into a pocket of grace"

A sand dollar lies beside my computer. It will remain there to remind me of this day of grace.

I witnessed a joyful first birth this morning - a triumph over fear. A testament to the wisdom of living in the moment, and taking each breath as it comes. The moment that will remain with me comes after the birth, while she was showering. We debriefed as she scrubbed her legs, just like it was a regular day. “That was a good day,” she said, shining and proud of herself. Her newborn son was in her husband’s arms in the other room. The “boys” voices could be heard beyond the sound of the water. Yes, that was a good day.

Later, I took advantage of the post-birth high and walked on the beach near my home. The tide was out for a mile, exposing the hard squeaking sand. I aimed for the international marker out in the bay, my feet tracing a line of respect between the embracing lovers to my right and the man looking for crabs by the water’s edge to my left. His naked body flashed in the sunlight. An eagle looked up as I walked by, tearing at his food. No sound but the wind. The water, velvet around my ankles. The white sand dollar almost floating on my curved fingers.

The walk on the beach, the birth...two examples of living in the moment. These moments of grace need to be remembered.