By: Sophie B. Hawkins
This evening, Dashiell and I walked onto the beach with dry branches and matches, kindle from the 7/11, a blanket and some water. The sky was as bright as laughing children, the sand warm, and the ocean waves as relaxed as horses turned out in the field, swishing their tails, snorting, and hanging their heads in the long grass.
We found a hidden spot near the dunes and dug a deep, round hole for our bon fire; our friend met us with hot cocoa and other ingredients. No one bothered us, as I thought they might, telling us not to build a fire, breaking our momentum with rules. We roasted marshmallows and Dashiell made perfect smores, we talked and watched the moon appear and hide behind its gauzy curtain, and then when evening turned to night, we watched her step out with indomitable radiance and clarity.
This is the unfettered moment, the true magic of being alive, Dashiell and I and Bubble Gum are sailing as a tight ship on the spirit of the times. Dashiell runs into the night ocean, dances on the rocks with incredible balance and courage, and I no longer caution him. Or I should say rarely, and then it’s about other people’s lack of common sense. Dashiell is playing with his independence, and in a more experienced way, so am I.
Still pregnant with the moon inside me, bigger and rounder every day, my daughter hasn’t yet illuminated me with her indomitable radiance. Meanwhile, the world she’s coming into is more and more wonderful, less and less limited, lighter and more luminous from dumping heavy judgments into the past. My seventy nine year old mother said, “I’m so happy about the Supreme court ruling!” She looked like a gleeful Barnard student, her young self, waving the New York Times with triumphant expectation.
For me, marriage is more about creating a family than shimmering romance. I am at a cycle in my life of returning to my family of origin, appreciating the fullness and richness of where I come from, and creating a solid family of my own with my children and friends. I have married myself. I am exactly who I want to spend the rest of my life with.
Thinking about it now at 5:48 in the morning, listening to distant thunder and admiring the green grey bay at my feet, Dashiell has been the wiser. He has taught me by example to look for myself in me, to stop seeking permission to accept what I’ve already accomplished. In supporting and protecting his mind, body and spirit, I’ve also changed the flora and fauna of my subconscious. I readily embrace my right to feel happy and free. It’s what our ancestors fought and died for- Independence. Even if some of our ancestors were on the wrong side of history, in their own way, every human marches toward individual freedom, becoming one with their own spirit.
As another great love and challenge comes out of the sea of dreams and into my life, our lives, my roots grow stronger under pressure, and deeper still. I have moments now when I am afraid of the unknown, the physical unfathomability of pushing a human out of my body, meeting her for the first time, and it feels like it’s not really going to happen-but the dr. won’t let her stay in a day past July 7. Dashiell waited until the last minute, too, but he wouldn’t let himself be induced, it had to be on his time. It’s a Hawkins thing. I’ll let you know when she’s born, and I’ll post a picture.
HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!!!!!!