The water was choppy and colder than I was used to, but on this triple-digit day there was no debate.
“It’s too hot”
“Right!?” He was faced-down on his towel, but the beads of sweat on his back agreed.
“I’m going in.”
I stood up, brushed the sand from my palms and pranced my completely naked, out-of-shape ass in front of everyone on the nude beach and walked.
As my body floated with the current, my belly and me had a moment. I laced my fingertips across my navel and exhaled with determination to get back into stripper shape. Fine – as close to stripper shape as a middle-aged broad can get.
“You just have to get all the way in, then it’s awesome!” I was thirteen, bragging about how I had the balls to brave the cold (it only took the afternoon to submerge myself completely).
Once I was swimming, my eyes surveyed the people along the shore. It didn’t matter that my body wasn’t perfect. That a crowd of strangers saw my cellulite and buddha belly in motion. I was comfortable in my skin. I wasn’t happy with my body at the moment – but holy fuck – I was happy.
A swell lifted my body – and the water mirrored my breath – sighing with me in the realization of just how far I’ve come.