FASD on the Beach
Feet And Sand Dance
Once again I couldn’t sleep so I got up to write about our day.
I took my little girl to the swimming beach today. She bounced from the car and squealed at the idea of splashing in the water…at 3 years old this was her idea of paradise. Despite her FASD, she looked like every other little girl at the beach…her shoulders and nose were sun-kissed and her swimming suit bottoms crept in on one side toward the middle as she bent over to pick up the pebbles along the shore. I enjoyed watching her and I enjoyed the feeling of being like every other family on the beach. I felt that we had left FASD at home for the day…it was written on the calendar in the multiple appointments for the week and it was scattered on the living room floor in the pieces of paper that had been torn in a rage before we left…but it wasn’t here and I could rest. I sat on my blanket and watched my daughter play, my face felt warm from the sun and my heart was light.
My little girl looked up and smiled at me and I invited her to come and sit with Mom on the blanket. She made a final little jump in the water and walked through the sand toward me. Her wet little feet collected a bounty of sand along the way. When she arrived at the blanket I told her to brush the sand from her feet so that the blanket wouldn’t get dirty and before I could stop her she turned and ran toward the lake so that she could clean her feet in the water. She then turned from the lake and walked back through the sand toward me…only to notice her sandy feet again as she reached the blanket. The mom on the blanket next to me giggled as she watched the third, fourth and fifth jaunt to the lake and back and I’m sure she thought it was adorable, but I knew that FASD had found us. It hadn’t stayed at home. It wasn’t there in a rage, it wasn’t there in medication or appointments, but it was there. The dance went on, the Feet And Sand Dance…FASD on the beach.
July 7, 2005
A Wonderful Day
That was beautiful. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. It made tears come to my eyes as I remembered our day at the beach.
We took our kids to the beach on Memorial Day weekend. They saw a girl sitting by herself on the sand. They got busy digging holes in the hill of sand, and one of mine asked the girl to come play with them. She was 19 going on about 5. She said that no one let her play with them because they thought she was dumb. Mine said that they didn't care what anyone thought, come play.
We overheard the parents talking about how there were some kids actually playing with their daughter, and they got out their camera and took many pictures of all the different games they played. They said no one had ever offered to play with her before. It was sad, and yet I was so glad. One of mine is 12 going on 5. He got her to stand up and twirl and feel free, not to worry about what anyone else thought. They ran through the sand and rolled and dug and played word games sitting in a circle. We had FASD there with us too. But this time I was glad. It gave another girl a chance to have a wonderful day.
Carol in WA
July 7, 2005
FAS Community Resource Center