To my Little Belle and Sissy Boo,
So many people have questioned why we moved to a boat. They worry about you two sweet little chickens. I am grateful people are worrying about you, but they could never worry more than me and Daddy.
“Will your girls be safe?”
“Where will they play?
“Will they have to sleep in their life jackets?”
“What if they fall in the water?
“What if, What if, What if”
In my heart I know we have made the right choice. We kept you both first in every conversation we had about the decision. You see though little loves, we’ve never lived on a boat before. We don’t know what to expect, but isn’t that the fun of it? Isn’t life about capturing the adventure that lies around the corner? Isn’t it about seeing the unknown before you and charging towards it with intention instead of retreating because of fear? We want you to see that different is okay. A life with daily challenges is good. It’s called living. We want to learn this new life with you.
You don’t have the yard to play in anymore, but you have clams and sea anemones to check on and ducks to watch and Popeye the seal to guard the waters around our boat at night. You have an ice cream shop a stones through from the boat and the park in town with swings is only a skip away. You have a million stars at night to see from our deck and blue herons that sound like coo coo clocks. You have otters that scared us to death the first time we heard them playing under our dock herding fish. You have over zealous sea gulls that hope you will drop your crackers. You imaginations run wild at night as we imagine the ocean floor below. (Minus the scary jelly fishes that we will NEVER bring up again.)
You have a new fancy “life coat” with a whistle that each of proudly blow as you march along the docks. You have a newfound confidence each time we let you walk a little further ahead without holding our hands. We are learning to trust you more and more. We are learning to communicate in a new way. We are learning to appreciate your independence. We are watching you grow in ways we never imagined.
Will you fall in the water? My bet is yes. Actually, I bet Daddy falls in first, then probably Charlie. You know what though? If you fall in, we will get you out and dry you off and kiss your cheeks and laugh with you or dry your tears. We will keep you as safe as we can but we can’t keep you in tiny little boxes your whole life. We will let you lean over the edge just a little to get your balance and see what lives under our dock. We will let you dip your toes in the water to see just.how.cold. the water is here. We will let you jump in if you want. This adventure is about living and learning together. You ladies will learn what you like and don’t like. I can’t tell you what that might be. We must discover it together.
I can’t even begin to tell you how amazed I am with the spirit of adventure you girls have about living on a boat. You are bursting with excitement. Your ability to embrace this change astounds me. Yes, Sissy, I know showers are scary. But you are brave and last night when the whole family was literally cheering for you the whole time you showered, you shined on through and persevered. You surprised yourself and couldn’t stop beaming and saying “I did it” when you were done. Victory!
Little ladies, I promise you, our boat will always be filled with love for you both. We will keep you safe and warm and we will learn and grow together on this adventure. We will have ups and downs and surprises but we will have each other and that’s really ultimately what matters the most.
PS: You don’t have to sleep in your lifecoat. Docks and deck only.