This weekend Mark and I did something that we used to do quite often when the boys were little. We made a fall visit to the beach, we walked along the sand, watching the waves rush in, smelling the salt air and seeing the fog envelop everything. This trip walking at Salisbury State Reservation was almost impossible, to put it mildly..the ocean was angry. Sub-Tropical Storm Melissa was off the New England Coast and she was stirring up the waves in a crazy frenzy.
There was a little boy running in the sand, chasing through the dirty foam that the ocean had left behind. His mom trailing after him, fruitlessly trying to put his jacket back on him. He was laughing and giggling as he was tossing handfuls of foam in the air, and her patience was wearing thinner by the second. He was wet up to his waist from letting the waves soak him as they ran farther and farther up the shore each time they broke.
My memory instantly returned to Kyle, he would be in the ocean regardless of how cold it was, I learned to bring him multiple changes of clothes for these off season trips. Telling him he couldn’t go in, just wasn’t an option. Connor would stay far enough up on shore that he didn’t get wet, or only the edges of his sneakers got wet. Kyle would ditch his clothes and head full fledged towards that freezing cold water. If we had been there on a weekend like that, with those angry waves, it would have taken all my strength to keep him on the shore so he didn’t drown!
They each had their own fears, and their own hesitations. Kyle loved water, and waves from the time he was born. They were never Connor’s friends. He was much happier building sandcastles, or playing ball on the beach.
If it had a motor or wheels, it was right up Kyle’s alley… I swear his first words were “vroom, vroom go!!.” Connor was all about balls, sports, girls and speed. Baseball, football girls(from day 1) and the faster he could ski the happier he was.
I never could understand how 2 children raised in the same house, by the same parents, could be so vastly different. But that is what made them my boys, they were different, yet as they got older they shared things and knew how to respect each others differences without it tearing them apart.
I had always vowed I wouldn’t have an only child, my children would have each other. To grow up with, to learn from and with. But somehow that thought didn’t follow through. I will always be a mother of 2, Connor will always be in my heart. But Kyle won’t have the younger brother to joke with and hang around with and continue to be with…..Sometimes the best laid plans just don’t come to fruition, no matter how hard you try.