This morning I had my now-routine early morning swim here in Falmouth Harbour; the water was smooth as the wind hadn’t picked up yet, and the sun was just coming over the hills in the east. It had been raining sporadically, as it often does, and the clouds were trying desperately to keep the sun sheltered behind them. I slipped off the dock into the aquamarine cool water and did several laps of breaststroke before my goggles began to let water in. I paused, treading water for a moment, while I drained the water from the lenses, when I looked to the southwest to see the most incredible rainbow arching majestically over the green peaks that outline the harbour. I recalled my mum’s favourite Eva Cassidy song with her rendition of “Over the Rainbow” and smiled as I floated in the water. The holidays are sometimes difficult (I know, I know, you’ve seen the pictures of Antigua, so really how difficult can it be to be in a tropical paradise?!), and I miss Mum a lot at Hanukah, Christmas, birthdays and any other times of ritual.

This morning in the water I could feel her presence and had an overwhelming sense of calm wash over me. I took in the beauty and vivid colours of the rainbow and thought about how much natural beauty there is in this world, and how lucky I am to be privy to this beautiful new place I temporarily call “home.”  I put my goggles back on and did a few more strokes to get a workout in before camp began. but felt called to stop and look at the rainbow once again. And so, I paused, took off the goggles, and saw that the rainbow had disappeared: in only a few moments! I had a sudden pang of the “should’ves, and could’ves” as in,  “I should have just stayed still and enjoyed more of the rainbow instead of continuing to swim…now I’ve missed it!” This is one of my usual traits that tend to be self-destructive, and that I’ve been working on getting rid of. I had to laugh at myself and then come to the realization that of course the rainbow would disappear and vanish: everything does, in its own time. Lives, jobs we once loved, relationships that once flourished. I’m currently experiencing the end of a relationship that was once beautiful, vivid and full of colour, and now has ended. One minute all is full of colour, and the next, only gray skies remain. Another lesson about how to enjoy each moment fully, because the inevitability is that it won’t stay. I say this not to sound like a Debbie-Downer, or because I’m feeling sad and slighted, but because it is simply the truth.

As I tread water and looked at the place where the spectrum of colour lay only moments before, I realized this example of impermanency and tried to see how Mum’s life had been that beautiful rainbow, that my last relationship also had threads of that beautiful rainbow, and that although they are no longer here and now, the essence of these relationships continues as I remember the beauty they once held. Tonight, as I sing and play at a local restaurant here in Falmouth Harbour, I will sing “Over the Rainbow” and feel a little lighter, with hopes that the audience too will feel a little lighter and more spirited for having heard it. 

 

 

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