The Calming Gifts of Nature

I sit here this evening listening to Snatam Kaur and Peter Kater’s album Heart of the Universe as I reflect back to a little over two weeks ago.

It’s been a whirlwind of emergencies happening in my family’s life. Mom’s health has taken such a turn for the worst since last fall. Worsening in many ways in the last few months especially. She has endured so much suffering and it’s been so difficult to witness it all. I honestly don’t know how she’s endured what she has, but she has. She’s a strong woman who has a strong will, like her own mother had.

A few weeks ago I received an early morning call from Dad telling me that he had called the ambulance for Mom, she was having another attack with her breathing and I better get over there asap. I live around the corner from their home. So thankfully this happened on a Saturday morning so my husband was at home to stay with our son. The ambulance arrived quickly. All I can do in those intense moments is try and comfort Mom as best I know how, then give the ambulance attendants what they need and have to know. Once she is taken care of I’m able to be there for Dad as this is so difficult for him to experience these emergencies with Mom.

That same day they decided to admit Mom into the hospital for observations for a few days. No sooner that she was admitted, she suffered the worst attack ever. It was horrific watching her struggling for each breath. I don’t know why, but I didn’t walk away. I was frozen there. Why didn’t I grab Dad by the arm and walk him away too? I didn’t. I stood there in shock observing all this happening in slow motion it seemed. Emergency codes came across the hospital speakers. This was happening for Mom. The room filled quickly with emergency response staff. We were taken away to a waiting room where we called our brothers. They should come as soon as they could we told them. I tried to pray but couldn’t even do that. We thought we might lose Mom.

That evening I got back home about 12-14 hours later, emotionally exhausted and yet wired like I had stuck all my fingers in electrical sockets in the wall. It had been quite a day. I went to bed, but tossed and turned all night, barely able to sleep a wink. At 4 am I got up and decided to call the nurse in ICU to see how Mom was doing, she had a stable night. That was a huge relief. Since I couldn’t sleep and my son had decided to not sleep in his bed that night, I crawled in his bed thinking maybe I could get a few hours of sleep there since all I was doing was staring at the ceiling in our room. I was laying there wide-eyed when all of a sudden I heard a loud bang, like an explosion and that followed by an alarm of some sort going off. I had no clue what was going on since I had not seen or heard any vehicles drive by. I had no clue what that was. Then fire trucks came down our road. A neighbour a few doors down from us loss their home to a fire that morning. Their home was completely engulfed in flames. Luckily no one was home. I felt for them, for their loss as I stood on our back deck looking at the clouds of smoke and bright pink glow in the early morning sky. My emotions of that day with Mom, all tangled up in their loss, intensifying what I was already feeling.

Early that morning I grabbed my camera and went outside bare feet on the damp grass to photograph a basket full of crystals that I had just a few days earlier dug up out of our backyard. I had buried all my crystals for a few weeks before in the earth to help cleanse their energy. This was the first batch that I had cleaned and taken out of the earth. Their powerful energy, and taking this photo helped me feel a little better. It helped me focus on something other than the pain and emotions of the previous day and that early morning. What a 24 hour period this had been.

The Calming Gifts of Nature

Mom came through this ordeal and spent 4 days in ICU, as well as the rest of that week in the hospital. She returned home a week later, weaker and more frail from these last few much more intense episodes. We were grateful that she had pulled through and were happy to see her come back home. Every day she is getting a little stronger.

That same week that Mom was in the hospital my husband had a few health crisis himself once again. At first all I could think was “really God, really!! Really!! ALL THIS, ALL AT ONCE… WHY???? WHY??? this makes no sense at all to me.” Then I quickly chuckled, even tough none of this was funny in any way whatsoever. Looking back at the last three years, not much has felt humorous in my life. It’s been one thing after another happening with so many people close to me, intense stuff that I have had no control over. So I realized in that moment that I had absolutely no control once again, over any of this.

I’m not in charge. God is!! He has a plan for each of them, for each of us, for me, for my family, and for my parents. So I knew that I needed to keep my nose out of His business and let Him take care of this one too. So I let go. I surrendered a little bit more that week. I consciously practiced that. Taking many deep breaths each day and that helped me to trust more and let go on some level of what was swirling all around me. I prayed, a lot and asked God to take care of both of them, of all of them, and of me. By then I was able to pray. I was finding words this time. I prayed that He help us all get through these more trying times. That He guide each of us on our paths and that He help me keep my nose out of it.

At the beginning of the week when Mom was in ICU, I knew that I needed to clear my energy and ground myself. Emergencies and hospitals always pull me out of my energy. I felt pretty frazzled around the edges for a few days.

So early that Monday morning out I went bare feet once again walking around our yard, taking a few photographs, breathing deeply, clearing my mind, and clearing the energy in my body that didn’t feel like mine. After taking a few simple photographs I felt like myself again. I had found some calming gifts in nature that morning.

The Calming Gifts of Nature

Lots of seeds in this tree for next year’s early spring blooms…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

The Calming Gifts of Nature

this huge tree on our property helps ground me when I need it. I never thought I’d be connecting with nature like I have over the last few years. It’s amazing the many gifts that nature offers us. All we need to do is go outside and it’s all there for us to be with…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

a new shrub that will grow bigger, and that will have blooms growing perhaps next year…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

a peek into one corner of our backyard. I love what we have created in our yard, on our property the past 31 years. It brings me great joy when I take photographs especially, it’s like I’m seeing it through a different lens…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

and there were blooms, beautiful colours…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

I love all the colours and shapes found in nature…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

The Calming Gifts of Nature

roots, and more roots, so many crossing over one another on the surface of the lawn, from our bigger trees we have. I find roots fascinating to look at. It’s like there’s a deep mystery in each of them, calling me. A story that wants to be heard perhaps. Listen closely it says… follow me, see where it leads you to…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

this view, the forest behind our home, with many wild ferns…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

The Calming Gifts of Nature

The Calming Gifts of Nature

The Calming Gifts of Nature

a forest really calms me. I am able to find myself in a forest. I also find God in nature. You can read about one of my excursions a few years ago in our backyard, here. 🙂

The Calming Gifts of Nature

The Calming Gifts of Nature

shadows, and the visual effects on the green lawn…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

and more pink blooms…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

I don’t know what it is about shadows that I love, but I find them so interesting to look at…

The Calming Gifts of Nature

The Calming Gifts of Nature

this I photographed one evening, the sky was so beautiful. When I look at the sky, this is one of God’s ways also that He talks to me. I sensed Him telling me that all is perfect in my life, and perfect with everyone that I care about and love. That we are all ok. That we are all where we need to be in His plan for us. That brings me some comfort in the midst of lots of confusion some days. So I practiced letting go, trusting more deeply than ever and surrendering to the message that I believed He was sending to me that evening.

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Comments

  1. Lisa Williams says:

    Wow, you’ve gone through such a lot in a short period of time – I’m sending prayers for your Mom and all of you. The photographs are beautiful; that connection with nature and with God through nature is the only thing that’s kept me sane at times…it’s amazing the peace that comes just from looking at and being with the natural world.

  2. Thank you Suzanne for sharing your experience with nature. I so relate to everything you’re saying about it. When life is chaotic, being in nature helps me so much. It also reminds me of how much I have to be grateful for in my life. Holding space for you and your family during these challenging times…like the sacred basket of crystals…many you find many gifts buried there. Blessings to you!

  3. Suzanne,
    I have been truly amazed over the years at how much we can handle in this life. When it is chaotic, spending time in our natural environment makes me feel at peace and amongst the richest women in the world.

  4. Nature soothes us deeply. That’s why I love having the dog in my life now. She takes me outside every day so I can take in the beauty and energy. I keep you and your family in my prayers. You are brave, strong, and so loving!

  5. Mary Levac says:

    This is beautiful. Just reading it was relaxing and the photos as well. It is amazing what our bodies can go through. Sometime I just take a deep breath and give all my worries to God. Love the crystals, I would like to learn more about them.. You are so strong, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Sending our blessings for your family.

  6. Loved this post Suzanne! I also find soul restoration out-of-doors, in nature. Under the canopy of trees, I can almost feel the breath of God energizing me. Walking and taking photos of anything that strikes my eye is how I document the moment, but always remembering that it is not just what I see, but Whom. Love to you and yours.

    P.S. Still aching over the loss of my dear brother, so this was a great reminder that we are not alone.

  7. I agree. Nature really has a way of calming our souls. It feels like God is communicating with us through nature.
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  8. Suzanne, just when you think you can’t go through anything else, another situation arises screaming for more strength and attention. The Plan is always in action. You have learnt very well how to give it to the Universe (Nature) by appreciating its perfection. Thank you for sharing your journey! xo

  9. Mary Dowdy says:

    Wow! Such wonderful words and pictures. Yes, cousine Suzanne, nature sure is wonderful and calming. Prayers are going out for all of my family all of the time. I love you all.

  10. Dawn Conery says:

    So powerful and timely for me Suzanne. Thank you. Sending you healing thoughts and huggs. Dawn

  11. I appreciate each of you for taking the time to leave a comment, and taking the time to read my blog post. It’s great to see that many of us connect with nature and it brings so much healing. xo

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