Photo by Skyler Bradley

By Skyler Bradley

As I’ve gotten older, I often think about how lucky I am to live ten minutes from a beautiful beach. Living on Cape Cod my entire life, it is easy to forget that not everyone shares that same luxury that I am able to access so easily. I think about how lucky I have been to not only see Cape Cod beaches, but I have been able to travel to many different places where the beaches are even more beautiful than they are here on the Cape. It is easy to forget that there are people in the world that have never seen the beach.

My realizations of how lucky I’ve been my entire life came when I attended college in Worcester last year. When I Googled it, I was shocked to see that the closest beach was an hour and fifteen minutes away, I had never lived that far from the beach. My roommate and a few of my friends expressed that that was normal to them and that they had only ever been to the beach a handful of times in their entire lives, I have never been so shocked. Although I knew not everyone lives as close as I do to the beach, I was still in complete shock, not realizing how incredible it is that I am so close to the ocean. Since that moment, I have frequently gone to the beach more often, and every time I go, I take in as much of it as I can.

Over the summer, my roommate and a friend from school came down to visit the Cape. I told them we could spend the day at the beach and my roommate was very excited about that. She doesn’t live near a beach, so something that was completely normal to me, was the most exciting thing in the world for her. When we got in my car to go to the beach, they asked how long it would take to get there, I replied saying we would be there in less than ten minutes, they were shocked.

Since these moments of realization that I am extremely lucky to have something so beautiful be so close by, I have used the beach as my therapy. We’re dealing with difficult times right now, sometimes all we need is to get in our cars and drive. My drives always lead me down to the beach and for that I am forever grateful. I am forever grateful that I am able to take a drive that leads me to the ocean. There is something incredibly therapeutic about hearing the tide go in and out, seeing the birds enjoy the ocean, just last week there was even a seal at one of my favorite beaches on Cape. I was never able to fully appreciate the ocean until I was old enough to understand that not everyone is as fortunate as I am. Now, I take in every moment by the ocean, keeping in mind that one day, I may not be so close.