This week I spent Thursday night at the Oregon coast. I live about 90 minutes away, but still only manage to make it to the beach two or three times a year. This trip the weather wasn’t particularly warm, but even fifteen minutes in front of the Pacific ocean still managed to make an impact.
I don’t think I can adequately explain how much peace I find when I get into nature. Red Rock Canyon, the beach at Lincoln City, Multnomah Falls in the Columbia Gorge – it doesn’t matter where. When I let it in, something inside me just opens up. My morning pages become full of descriptions and images where wind and water and rock are living beings that interact with me.
Even if that’s all it was – just fleeting moments when I feel connected to the world around me – it would be worth it. But it’s more than that. Making that connection stays with me, helps repair and restore the bridge that allows the words in my head to flow onto keyboard or paper.
When was the last time you touched nature? Did you put your hands in the earth of your garden? Walk barefoot in the city park? Watch the sun on the water and listen to it rush against the shore? Feel the wind on your face while you packed a snowball?
It doesn’t have to be a major event. Just get outside, and really open your senses to what’s around you. You’ll be glad you did.