This Saturday Abbie went for her second excursion on the ocean with Pure Light, the organization that gets special needs people out in outrigger canoes. It was a brilliant day — much more beautiful than the gray windyness of the first time she went. Kyle, who has paddled before, was able to join the crew in the boat when we took Abbie out. I was able to avoid weeping this time, but just barely! Abbie was so relaxed by the gentle rocking of the waves that she fell asleep for part of the trip.
The ocean literally washed away all the tension, worry, irritation, and just plain “yuk” that was built up inside me…perhaps I should become a mermaid!! We stopped for a while a distance from the shore, just to let Abbie take it all in. Kyle and some of the crew jumped in for a short swim, and I just tried to bottle up the serenity of the sea. As they paddled back, I watched the turquoise water run against the yellow ama and enjoyed the noiseless sound of the boat cutting through the waves.
I cannot say enough to convey the goodness and kindness of the Pure Light volunteers. After we’d gotten Abbie out of the boat, they took RJ, Matthew and our nurse’s daughter, Kiana, out for a ride. This was truly a family day! Once we were all on the beach again we were treated to a delicious (or “ono”) lunch and fellowship with many new friends.
One paddler came up and said, “Hey! There’s Abbie…she’s the one!!” He continued, “Her first time coming here was my first time as well. When I turned around to see you crying I thought, “Whoa! What did we do wrong? Why is she upset? But then you said something about you and Abbie being blessed, and I was hooked. It is in my heart now…I wouldn’t miss this for anything!” OK, so that broke my “no tears” policy for the day, but it was well worth it!
All the volunteers promise that they get far more out of it than we do, but I just don’t know how that is possible. Perhaps we should declare a tie and praise God for how He showers blessings on both the giver and receiver. We are sad that Abbie will miss the next two month because of her surgery, but if you have a special needs family member on Oahu, Pure Light meets every 3rd Saturday, 10am, at Kailua Beach park.