© 2009 ….RaeDi
One of the dear pleasures in my life I have is right at my back door and it is the Puget Sound. It is a place I go to for enjoyment, when I need to find spiritual peace, for thinking and giving thanks. Living at the tip of a peninsula has as many variables as there are minutes without end. Ever changing, but always having a quality of similarities, a constant like that of a reliable lifelong friendship. It seems no matter the weather conditions or time of day people are attracted and are drawn to her shores. The magnificence and pure beauty seems to catch the attention of all ages.
A variety like one would find sitting in an airport lobby with a long layover. I discovered as a child a certain gratification in watching and studying people, complete strangers. It kept my mind and imagination open to all possibilities. Thoughts of where they came from and where they were going opened my mind’s eye to what each of their lives might be. It always seemed to me that these strangers must have lives more interesting and exciting than my own, being a young girl raised in rural Missouri. It was not until years later that I learned that where and how I was raised was just as important in my makeup as the people who I loved watching and wondering about.
Being on my beach leads me to wonder about all the pathways, I have journeyed on. Looking around me, I see and take in all the wonders close at hand. This body or bay of water has so much to offer with all the different waterways, the numerous channels and branches with the patterns of the many islands, inlets, outlets, peninsulas, and tributaries that are fed from the two mountain ranges that are formed on the east and west. It makes me feel so small like a grain of sand that lies at my feet. The Cascade Mountain Range as I stand on my beach can be seen as I look to the east, it is as far North and South as the eyes can see with Mount Baker to the north and Mount Rainier to the South. Sitting behind me, to the west, the Olympic Mountain Range each brings such beauty into my life. This whole scene was brought about when our last Ice Age retreated carving out the landscape that I see on this day. The huge boulders that lay at shores edge and the formation of the shoreline, the maze of all that is that makes the Puget Sound one very special place to observe, being up-close and feeling very blessed at this gift of all her sights and a glimpse of nature at her best.
The past has made the future; we now realize and are concerned about the carbon footsteps we are leaving. I too think about all the (footsteps) places that I have been blessed to live and visit. I think about all those pathways that I have journeyed on over my lifetime in so many wonderful places, each in its own way just as special as where I stand today. They too seem like a maze with lots of inlets, and outlets and so many branches of which many I have taken myself off the main path following these branches that have made my life and me what they are today. Each defining me as a whole and making my life’s passage an adventure building my spirit and allowing me to share and give along the way. Each footprint left is just as important as the previous one. Along these passageways just as significant and vital to me are the folks I have met, these souls have had and are of great consequence to making me whole, helping to magnify who I have become.
Those souls, which have included me in their lives, have enriched me far more than I dared to dream as a child watching and studying others so long ago. Feeling their energy, their hopes and dreams, seeing and sharing their elations and difficulties, they too mine; all is relevant and significant as to who I am and what I have become. What I share and in all that I do, it does make a difference to all the souls that are on my pathway. If I am observant, taking time to be one with nature one with all the souls that pass me on the street, shop with me at the stores and even those that I watch at my beach each and all are contributing to making me whole.
I find myself with a smile on my face and spirit when watching those that are having so much fun. I find myself hoping the angler who has had patience from early morn unwearyingly waiting to have just one good catch for the day. I am just as jubilant in my heart as he is, the whole time he works his reel, pole and line with a fish at the other end walking up and down the beach to wear out this catch. Once reeled in to the shore taking hold, seizing the prized catch from his hard time-consuming work, that it took to bring this one in and the pride is etched on his face and in his spirit. I see and feel it all just as I do when the fish frees itself from the line after a good arduous fight from both ends.
Those that I watch give me moments of pause to reflect and believe that my actions should replicate and sincerely touch those around me whether they are a stranger or not. Being aware of this allows my internal spirit to light my way, it is what essentially makes me whole, and it enlightens me to lead by example. My hope is that in all things beyond me that I will strive to make a difference. This in turn opens my eyes, it exposes all the beauty that surrounds me, the combination of everything that I can see, hear, touch, smell and taste, these senses are the quality and trait seekers in our lives. They are what make our life experiences inspiring, exciting, extraordinary stirring up all those senses that make life agreeable, pleasant, satisfying and pleasurable. Each has made me realize this truly is the whole of all that is along with our faith. I come to realized that my childhood and the way I was raised prepared me to become a better person that material needs and wants do not make you a whole. The only way to distinguish your true character your moral fiber in life is by the way in which you live your life and what you do for others.
Playing tag with the waves small children are still so free in their spirits and their hearts are still so pure and honest. They invariably play tag with the surf and they run towards the open waters as the waves recede and then turn and run as fast as they can as the water surges, as it rapidly approaches, charging towards them on shore. You see and feel such delight as the rushing water reaches and quickly flows up the legs of these wonderful little souls. Hearing their shrieks and squealing of delight as they run and the water has made the tag, “Your it!” The water announces with its cold wet touch. They turn to start again and try as hard as they might not to let the water win and tag them again. Such innocent, but hearing their high spirits expressed by their laughter, their vitality- joie de vivre, has made my heart leap with theirs and put a smile on my face and my spirit just watching and knowing what it felt to be young and playing similar games.
Such excitement and jubilance from something that is as natural as nature and what she has to give, it opens my heart and mind that with everything comes cycles. These young ones will one day be the elders and they too will watch life as it comes and goes. They will see the same and experience things physically, mentally, and hopefully spiritually as each one has done before them as it has since the beginning of time.
I love to walk the beach and find beach glass and pottery shards from long ago. What time and the currents of the water have done to reshape these wonderful little pieces of glass into such odd shapes, the edges that once would have cut are worn and now ground and are so smooth to the touch. They come to the shore and beachcombers like me collect these wonderful pieces of glass of varying colors of green, blue, violets every color in the rainbow. I wonder as I gather the beach glass when it was first dropped in the water for whatever the reason. How many tides of time have gone by since it first started its journey?
Like the glass with time, it is worn down, but it does not lose its appeal, it is aged and sought by many for its beauty. The same with nature, time goes on; we see births and deaths in all things, if one takes the time they will find the beauty in all, that long pass was and always will have beauty. If we take the time to watch and learn, to feel what we are seeing and cherish those around us, age is beauty even when it loses its luster. I sit here on my beach and take it all in, the beauty, the fishermen of all ages and the children and their families and how they are building whom they will become with examples set in motion with each emotion, expression, and reaction of their fellow-man. I do not want to live just for myself; I want to live outside myself. I want what I do and say to make a difference. I use my life as an example hoping others will see and have the realization of the faith that has made me whole, my deep abiding faith completes me.
The mountains and water are here forever; nature is always in cycles of change but will always be a constant. The only thing that will change in time the fishermen will be replaced with the same and the children and their families and friends they will one day be the elderly and at the end of their pathways of life. I hope that as each age and grow with time that they reap the insight needed so they too can value all their gains and help to mold spirits with the examples of the way they live their lives. That their families and friends will gather with compassion, affection and respect for what each person has been and represented in their lifetime. That by example the keen awareness of all that is spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically, this is the final finishing point of time-shared and giving closure the love and respect it so rightly deserves. This closure is the continuous journey that is eternal, there is more to life than what we live, it is how we loved, lived and shared. Seeing and sharing with them as they pass on to a new pathway, an eternal pathway where they too shall be waiting our turn for timelessness.
At that point, our earthly pathway ends, I hope I have made the best of what was put on my path. I know I have a love of nature and beauty and try hard to find both in all the souls that have been put on my life’s journey. Time is without end as with the tides each marking a moment in time, and beauty, those pleasing and impressive qualities of our center (spirit) can be found in all. Do not let a person that has been in your life not know how you feel and let them know that you are because they took some time to help shape you, they have taught you to live by example and may it continue through you….
The Heart (Gratefulness):
“Thanks to the human heart by which we live,
Thanks to its tenderness, its joys and fears,
To me the meanest flower that blows can give
Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.”
William Wordsworth (1770 – 1850) feeling the same similarity that draws me towards the sights, sounds, scent… (Quote from Encarta Encyclopedia)
Poems in Two Volumes (vol. 2), 1802?-1806, “Ode: Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood
“For I have learned to look on nature,
not as in the hour
Of thoughtless youth; but hearing often-times
The still, sad music of humanity.”
William Wordsworth (1770 – 1850) British poet (Quotes from Encarta Encyclopedia)
Subtitled: “On Revisiting the Banks of the Wye During a Tour, July 13, 1798.” Lyrical Ballads, July 13, 1798, “Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey”