Thursday, June 18, 2009
Nourishing the spirit
My partner and I took a mini-vacation and went to a couple places in Wisconsin: The Creamery in Menomenie, Wisconsin and Canoe Bay, also in Wisconsin. It was a much needed vacation and time away. No laptops, no internet, no cell phones! I was happy to disconnect.
Canoe Bay is a luxury resort that my partner treated me to ... a 2.5 hour drive from the Twin Cities and we were in the middle of nowhere.
We were surrounded by deer. On our walks and on my runs we had numerous encounters with deer. On our last morning there, I came within 4 feet of a deer who was grazing outside of our cottage. I was writing in my journal as I saw the deer from our window. I dropped my pencil, grabbed my camera and spent half an hour observing and taking photos of a deer. There is something magical about being in the presence of a wild creature. As our eyes connected, I could sense the gentleness of the deer. There is a spiritual healing that takes place for me in nature and in the presence of wild beings.
I realized on this trip as my partner and I were talking how my soul is nourished not only by writing but my being out in nature and taking photographs. We both made commitments to take steps and actions to care for ourselves and our relationship and to not move through life on auto-pilot. We biked, hiked (I also ran), watched movies, wrote, lifted weights, took photos, had an incredibly scrumptuous dinner at The Creamery on Sunday night, talked/reconnected .... it's so easy to get sucked into the rat race of life. Since I made a conscious decision to step back from my ever increasing responsibilities and to take care of myself, I have found that my energy level has returned to "normal". I am no longer fatigued. Yes, I changed a lot of things (reduced stress, dietary changes, increasing working out, stepping away from computer work and email, not stressing about everything, acupuncture, yoga, continued meditation/writing .... probably everything has helped. Our life is a web .... the strength of our web is dependent on how much we nurture our mind, body, spirit and heart.
In immersing myself in photography, I find myself in a meditative trance as I stop to notice what is around me and I shift perspective to capture the ever changing essence of a wild creature, a plant, or what many call "weeds."
There is beauty every where if we can slow down enough to notice. There is a lot I don't know .. there is a lot I have yet to learn .... and I welcome and embrace the mystery of life. One thing I do know though ... is life is too precious, too short to let slip through our fingers. I am grateful and I am extremely fortunate to have the life I have ... this morning, I am especially grateful for my family --- my partner, Ahnung, Missy, Mister, Henry.
I encourage you to take time for yourself today. You may be surprised to discover what you learn about yourself if you slow down enough to notice :)
I have posted more photos from our trip on my flickr site.