Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Sun Burned

Here’s the thing: I’ve always loved being in the sun.  We were raised old school.  We had to go outside to play even if it was in the oppressive Georgia heat.  Over the years I’ve traded my SPF 4, for sunglasses, a hat, and SPF 15, but 9 times out of 10 if you invite me to the pool/beach/river my answer is yes.  Again, we swore we wouldn't let having a baby change who we were so that meant when we were in Georgia for my cousin's wedding we were going to go to the beach.

Keep in mind that I've ALWAYS thought bringing a baby to the beach was ridiculous.  I’ve never understood the big hats, tents, surfer shirts, and swim booties for a kid that is just going to sit there.  It’s one thing when they can toddle around and play in the sand and water, but a baby that can't even sit up...what's the point?  There’s no way they are comfortable and the families never look that happy.  It just seemed like common sense to me to not waste a beach trip by taking a baby.
So, like most things since I’ve had a child, I’ve turned into the person that I used to make fun of.  In June, my 5 month old had his first trip to the beach.  As we were lugging the tent, the coolers, the diaper bag, the beach blankets, the sun block, the cameras, the bouncy seat, and the kitchen sink, all I was thinking was, “All of this for a stupid beach picture.”

It took an hour to get everything packed up, because by God we were going to stay a while to make it worth it, but that meant we needed lunch, drinks, and snacks for 4 adults, and one 5 year old.  I began going through the list:
·         Tent
·         Beach chairs
·         Beach blanket
·         Cooler with diet cokes for Andrea and Mama, Capri Suns for Mason, beer and water for me and TJ.  Three peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, five ham and cheese sandwiches, two different kinds of chips (seriously, who likes Salt and Vinegar chips?)
·         Diaper bag with a change of clothes, diapers, swim diapers, lotion, butt cream, pacifier just in case, extra blanket, and a bottle/formula.
·         3 beach bags with a  towel for everybody, Mason’s goggles and bucket, the bouncy seat so Teddy can sit up if we wants, sunscreen, and camera. 
I can do this, right?  Everything was set up.  Tent was great.  Beach blankets laid out.  Sunscreen applied.  Mason had his goggles and bucket.  Teddy was sitting happily in his bouncy seat.  Andrea and I had successfully dolled out every one's sandwiches, drinks, and chips.  I took a deep breath.  Smiled.  Cracked open my ice cold bud light and took that first magical sip.  I gave myself a mental high five.  I'm getting better at this whole motherhood crap.
I turned around just in time to see Teddy get so excited he bounced himself out of his seat and was contorted in a horrific position with his gigantic head face down in the blanket, but with his torso still buckled nice and tight into the seat.  I scream, throw my beer, and launch myself at my baby.  Out of the corner of my eye, I catch the disapproving glance from an older couple power walking by.  I spend the next hour trying not to cry.  I can't even wipe the tears from my eyes because I'm covered in sand and as I much as I love the beach I HATE sand. 
We were there only for about an hour and a half before it was time to pack up (another hour adventure), and head back for the condo. Gone are the days when all I had was a small beach bag. Gone are the days when I would just sit in the beach chair, have a beer, and read a magazine.  My biggest worry used to be just don't get sunburned.  Now, I’m the asshole with the wagon, the stressed look on her face, and the baby that has no idea what’s going on. Life will never be the same.

I desperately wanted a great pic of us at the beach as a family, so of course my forehead looks gigantic, TJ looks like he's dipping, and Teddy refuses to look.

Aunt Andi got the best pic.  Jerk.

Nap time on the beach.

Of course he pooped.  Look at him smirking.  He knows he made me walk half a mile to the trash can on the burning sand right after we got everything set up.

Notice the heinous bruise on my leg from toting the beach chairs.

Teddy look at the camera.  Forget it.

Woo hoo!  We survived our trek to the beach!  Who wants to go to the pool tomorrow?

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