Sands of Time


This past weekend I brought home a little bag of sand from our oldest daughter’s home in Savannah, Georgia. I do that. I collect earth from the places that we visit.

I am very nostalgic, and aside from photos and videos, I look for special ways to archive memories, so they can be revisited whenever I want to peak back in time. When we traveled, Terry would find a hat, or a wicked awesome t-shirt to take home, and the girls would find little things that intrigued them that would make their way back with us, too, but I loathed the process of searching through the tourist trap gift shops with all their trinkets and novelties. To me, those objects didn’t represent the time that we had spent together and would hold little long-term meaning as I looked back over my life and the memories that we had created as a family in fabulous places around the world.

So I started collecting the earth… sand, soil, rock. I would find the perfect spot to scoop up a handful of this God-hewned memorabilia and sift it down into a vessel for transport home to Ohio where I store each in a magnetic container in my living room. This display is an organic, meaningful, changing piece of art. I am mesmerized by the differences in the samples that I’ve acquired. Each is so diverse in color and texture, completely unique to the area that it came from, whether it was the beaches of Italy where my grandfather used to play, or the beaches of Cape Cod where my brother and sister and I played, or the beaches of Virgin Gorda where our daughters played, each is so special to me because of the time that we had spent there with the people that we love.

As I was preparing this sand for its new home here with us, I had a revelation. That just as sand shifts and changes constantly, so do our lives. Sometimes we are prepared for those changes and sometimes they happen regardless of our thoughts or expectations. And though the landscape of our lives is ever-evolving… developing and growing and uncertain at times… I still find magnificent beauty in it. I actively choose to appreciate each day with thankfulness and joyfulness, and for the new opportunity that it represents to serve God and the people that He loves.

Another thing that I have come to understand and embrace… when I resist it the least, when I let God do the sculpting of my life, that's when it’s the most effortlessly beautiful, just like the sand dunes of the Cape. That’s when my heart is at peace, that’s when I can be in the present moment, or enjoying the memories of the past with my collection of earth. Resisting resistance is part of my living well life. 

[ 2011]

Lisa McCoskey