Have you ever noticed that people are like seashells?
I went to gather beach-side treasures from my ocean garden for, to me, they are priceless, just like people, and quite irreplaceable.
I started out searching, like we all do when we are young, trying to find the ‘perfect’ ones, except I began to notice, they were all perfect. This one was perfectly white, this one was perfectly broken, this one had a perfect scar, this one a perfect crack, this one was perfectly black, this one had a perfect round hole in it. Each one I picked up was perfect.
I decided to see what I could find that lay ‘unseen’. I noticed that, although the beach was full of other treasure hunters, not one person was in the water, so, of course, I went into the water. Who knew what undiscovered treasures were hidden just beyond the surface. Who knew if, sight unseen, I might find the ‘perfect’ one.
Walking out onto some rocks, I ran my hand underneath them and I found perfect spirals, perfect snail-looking ones, like ones you would see in picture books, as my granny would’ve called them; I miss my granny. I dared to go out onto the rocks, past the warning signs that said DANGER! SWIM AT YOUR OWN RISK! My fellow treasure hunters must have thought me mad, surely thinking, “Stay where it is safe!” But I could not. Who knew what was out there, just beyond my line of sight. I must look with my hands.
I sat down on a rock and felt in a crevice, finding an absolute jackpot of gold. I found more than a few perfectly beautiful shells, absolutely stunning really, which had ‘grown’ together with plain ordinary pieces of rock, thus, mating for life. Why had they not mated with another beautiful one, I wondered…ahhh, because they did not see with their eyes, but rather with their hearts.
I came to see that I was finding the smoothest shells caught underneath overhangs of rock formation, caught there, unable to break free, needing a helping hand, mine, to free them. Their edges were so smooth, having been caught there for who knew how long, feeling each wave caressing them and, yet, unable to float free and enjoy the ocean ride. It wickedly amused me that these smooth ravishing beauties were not found by the other treasure hunters simply because it was not easy. And It wasn’t easy, traversing across the rocks, which were slippery, fighting against the tide, which threatened to pull me under at any moment. It was most assuredly not easy to reach out and grab these beauties but I knew now where they lay and I knew now I would be back for more.
Of course, I simply had to keep every single shell I touched, for how could I not once I had touched it? How could I toss it back down, without acknowledging it’s beauty, worth, and desirability? Wouldn’t I be, in fact, saying, you aren’t good enough to go home with me?
I ended up with a very large collection, making me smile. I noticed some of the other treasure hunters had bags with only one or two shells in them…I felt so sad for them. They were walking right past so many beauties but they couldn’t see them, for they only looked with their eyes.
Alas, as in life, all that glitters is not gold. I stepped over one of the rocks and totally got pinched on the back of my ankle by a crab, who drew first blood. As I watched the blood trickling down my ankle, I thought, well, there’s a good lesson for me and it gave me pause. Yes, all that glitters is not gold, but I would rather like to think that I simply startled the crab and he lashed out blindly.
I also found a shark’s tooth today, so somewhere there is a gap-toothed shark whose Christmas wish will undoubtedly be for a new front tooth.
and I delighted in knowing that I was their first.