Orchids on the Beach (Vol. 1)

I bring you this post (originally handwritten, might I brag) from the beach. Where I currently (well not once you’re reading this I suppose) sit out on the pier appreciating the weather, lake, and my current lack of responsibility. It’ll be a tough day indeed when I don’t have something professionally productive (because obviously this is productive, just not something I can turn into a paycheck, and I’ve got a cat to support) to do at 4:00PM on a Tuesday afternoon (or Thursday afternoon when I’m posting this for that matter).

So let me set the scene for you. We’ve got all the makings of a beautiful day. Sun, warmth, beach, the Chicago skyline off in the distance. Truly, I wish you were here with me seeing this…(wait, holy shit I have the power of technology, I can take a picture!). Unless, of course, you are here with me seeing this, in which case, I’d like to take a moment to extend my thanks for not saying hello. I don’t think my little introverted heart could’ve taken it.

*quickly panics that she’s just jinxed herself into not escaping this pier before someone says hello to her*

*glances around furtively*

*realizes she’s paranoid*

*immediately gets licked in the face by a passing dog*

Which, of course, prompted the owner to engage me in polite, apologetic conversation. Damn you, Universe.

Anyways, wasn’t I talking about something? Oh right, the scene. Aside from face-licking dogs, you’ve got your other normal beach things. The runners, getting their health on, reminding me why I don’t run. There are other loners, like me, who appear to be contemplating their very existence (especially that guy, he is definitely in some deep existential ish). No one else appears to be writing, so I’m guessing I’m the only one handwriting (brag brag brag [insert quote about ‘back in the good old days’]) a blog post at this moment (although I suppose they could be drafting it in their heads…I shouldn’t project my own writing skills on to others). I can see at least 6-8 (I’m bad at math) people in my immediate vicinity who are staring at their phones because who comes to the beach to enjoy nature? They come for the bomb ass selfie opportunities and stellar lighting, obviously.

Aaaaand a man just dove off of the pier (where it clearly says ‘no diving’)… he appears to be in shock of the water temperature…*double checks to be sure he’s not drowning* …he’s dragging himself very ungracefully back onto the pier…wait…oh hell, he’s talking to me…dude I have headphones in AND I’m actively writing. Ugh, people.

—Two Minutes Later—

Update: The water is cold; Diving man does not recommend. Thank Saturn he shared this vital (and totally not obvious) information with me. Just think, you were this close to never knowing that water you’re not currently jumping into is cold.

Oh holy stars, it’s an epidemic out here! And the disease that’s spreading is people disregarding that I clearly don’t want to talk to them. Someone just let their two inch tall dog lick my leg. Like brah, really? That dog is roughly the size of a paper towel roll…empty. You’re telling me you couldn’t stop it? I missed the first part of what paper-towel-dog-owner said, but I did catch this gem after muting my music: “Sorry, he (and I’m hoping he was talking about his dog here and not himself in third person) has got a thing for the left side of things.” Wait, what the fuck? Also, spoilers, the dog was on my right side. What is even happening out here? Maybe I’ve accidentally stumbled onto my new blog series: I sit at a beach and see how many people (and other living things) interrupts my “me time.” The idea has potential. And apparently I have a face and/or body langauge that says (despite my best efforts), “please talk to me.” Might as well retaliate against this curse by using an enjoyable self-care activity. Take that one, Universe!

*immediately apologizes to Universe out of fear of retribution*

Anyways, the scene (I swear I was initially working up to a point here). There are a lot of couples here. Couples strolling along the pier. Couples skipping rocks (no joke, it’s fucking adorable…and also impossible at the moment given the current wind velocity and wave size). Couples bike riding. Couples with children (wait, they call those families don’t they? …side note: oww, someone just kicked a rock at me, probably *squints* accidentally).

But yeah, couples. Lots of ‘em. Which reminds me, I know I mentioned I went on a date…okay, fine I went on two dates now…okay, fine soon to be three dates. It’s been so much fun (and hella stressful) to be back in the dating world. This day at the beach has helped remind me of why I endure the stress and the heartbreak of dating. The couples. There would be no purpose to my life without the humans (and cat) in it. I need connection. I want it. I love the people in my life, and I want to keep feeling this type of love.

So I’ve got to remember days like this. Days at the beach. When I can so clearly see the shape of love around us. I’ve always felt like I have these two sides of myself warring with one another. The sarcastic, jaded, closed-off side. And the hopeless, romantic, full-of-love side. And I tell you what, it’s days like this, sitting here at the beach and watching the different fabrics of people’s lives interweave into something beautiful that I can really see how I can be all of these things.

I can be exactly everything that I am. I want to be that, and I only want to be with someone who loves that. Whoever and wherever the other half of my couple is, they don’t need to be cut from the same cloth, because our material is all the same. I’ll be exactly me and they’ll be exactly them. And if we can be that, we’ll make an amazing patchwork design indeed.

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