it’s too cold to move. I long for the beach, to feel real sand between my toes. not playground sand, but white sand that feels like flour. I want the warm sun on my shoulders. last night, my youngest put lotion on my back, to help cure the dry skin that plagues me every winter. while he was rubbing his small hands in circles on my back, he asked if he, too, would get more freckles when he’s older. I told him those spots are likely caused by all the years of sunburn I’ve had on my upper back and shoulders, and that he would be OK if he wears sunscreen, something I should have been more careful to do. our minds both wandered to warmer places, with water and sun and screaming kids and kites and picnics on the beach and the occasional jellyfish. I haven’t been at a beach with the boys since before the divorce. we shall pinky swear to get back there. we will get back there. we will dance under the fireworks together again, as a family, and we will hunt for crabs and mermaids.