Friday, January 10, 2014

What tugs at my heartstrings

There are certain things, situations, places and sometimes even food that speak to my soul.  These are things that truly resonate with me, my body, my spirit and my soul.  Often when I see, smell, feel, read or do these things I feel my heart physically being pulled in that direction.

I have known since...forever...that I prefer warm weather to cold, I prefer scuba diving to snowboarding, and I prefer a day at the beach to a day in the mountains.  Don't misunderstand, I thoroughly enjoy snowboarding and spending time in the mountains, and even the occasional cold day, but if I had a get the point.

Andrew, on the other hand, is pulled towards the mountains, the snowboarding, the snowshoeing. He'd rather hike up a mountain and I'd rather hike down the mountain to the water.

Two days ago I had the distinct feeling and impression that these likes that we have are not simply "things we like".  I realized that it isn't just that I enjoy being on the beach in the sun, but that it's the sand under my feet.  It's the horizon on which I can see the end of the earth.  It's the sound the water makes washing up on shore.  It's the way I can see the sun set all the way down until it disappears beneath the water. It's the smell of salty air and sun kissed skin  It's the completely different world that exists underwater and the fact that I cannot survive in that world on my own.  It's the water at night that glows with natural light from those creatures beneath. It is the way the moon illuminates the water making it mysterious and sometimes scary.  It's the feeling of peace, relief and calm that I get the instant I arrive.

Along with this scenario I long for simplicity in life.  A simple, humble home, in a simple neighborhood where it's o.k. to walk down the street barefoot.  A place where children play in the streets and adults are friends with their neighbors.  Often people dream of visiting a place like this, vacationing to a Caribbean island or somewhere on the Gulf of Mexico.  I want to exist there. I yearn to live there, raise a family there, get the most out of...there...wherever there is.

That said, although it is not my idea of perfect, I completely understand Andrew's similar feelings about the mountains.  The majestic earth that surrounds and enfolds you, the feeling of being on top of the world when you reach the summit, the hard work it takes to get where you want to be, the quiet whispering of the wind through the trees, the fragrant smell of pine mixed with rich dark soil, discovering it all again when it snows deep and white.

Part of our journey, however, is learning to find the beauty and majesty in wherever we are.  I believe it is a true gift to be able to do this regardless of where one is at.  

While we currently live in a place with no mountains and no ocean nearby Andrew and I are learning this art very well.  We are discovering things we love about a place neither of us thought we would ever live.  I will admit, however, that when I see pictures of the places I dream of living again, I get silent little pangs in my heart, drawing me to that which is out of my reach for the time being.