Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s Gift from the Sea is one of my all-time favorite books. Short and sweet, it is nevertheless groundbreaking.
Anne was the spouse of Charles Lindbergh and she was his very capable co-aviator as they circumnavigated the globe. In spite of the fact that she was a woman and mother in the early 20th century. The couple’s history-making journeys took them all over the world.
Anne wrote A Gift from the Sea while enjoying a brief vacation on Florida’s Captiva Island. Written in 1956, her book topped the best-seller list for months and continues to sell steadily. She was at the front of a tide of upcoming change because of her need to balance competing obligations of family and career (something with which we 21st Century women are all too familiar.) Using the shells on the beach for inspiration, she reflected on the life of the American woman in the middle of the 20th century (NPR). I found this little treasure to be very relevant when I discovered it early in my marriage. Now I own a lovely blue hardcover copy with color illustrations throughout.
Here are a two more of my favorite AML quotes:
Perhaps this is the most important thing for me to take back from beach-living: simply the memory that each cycle of the tide is valid; each cycle of the wave is valid; each cycle of a relationship is valid. And my shells? I can sweep them all into my pocket. They are only there to remind me that the sea recedes and returns eternally.
I must write it all out, at any cost. Writing is thinking. It is more than living, for it is being conscious of living.
I began these pages for myself, in order to think out my own particular pattern of living, my own individual balance of life, work and human relationships. And since I think best with a pencil in my hand, I started naturally to write…
If she had written with our generation, don’t you think she would have been a blogger?