Courage by the Pond

There is a pond near my house that I love. I walk to the park that surrounds it in a matter of minutes. I’ve written several of my blog posts about this pond. I’ve taken a hot latte and a book and my thoughts – the light and the dark ones – here to this pond. It is a place that spoke to a space in my soul that craved peace, refreshment, life and beauty. Nature is my go-to place. You know what I’m talking about. One of those spots in nature that when you encounter it, you feel emotions and thoughts opening up, breathing and expanding and it is addicting.

I abruptly stopped going to the pond 6 months ago. An encounter with anther human being, turned this beloved pond into a frightening, panic-inducing place, filled with fearful things that had NO place there. The thought of walking to my pond didn’t fill me with joyful anticipation. Dread and anxiety took over.  Fear sucked away at what was once a safe place. That hurt and self protection took over.

Today I woke up and chose to go to the pond. It was time. The need for sanctuary, joy, rest, and a deep breath outweighed the dread, fear and what-ifs. I was armed with a hot latte, prayers for strength and protection and courage. Hmm. Courage.

The closer I got to my pond, the lighter I felt! Oh, this was good! I found myself smiling and greeting the water and the long, swaying fronds and tendrils of drooping branches; talking to the geese, ducks, turtles and pond skimming birds going about their morning business. I made my way to my favorite bench by a lovely tree. As I sunk down to the bench, I felt so at home. I just sat for a while, soaking in all the things I realize I had dearly missed. I felt full. The smell of the pond full of reeds, aquatic life, ducks and geese; the random green heron eyeing his morning breakfast; the scent of the flowers climbing the fence. The way the light shimmered onto the pond, as it passed through intricately intertwined branches and leaves, felt so comforting and familiar. Long lost friends that I had missed very much. Odd, you might think, to react so to a small pond in a park. Maybe….but who can fully understand the soul? I’m finding the soul to be intricate, delicate, yet untameably fierce and wildly protective of itself. Mysterious yet simple, in the way everyday, mundane things, like a small pond in a neighborhood park, can speak volumes that really only the soul can grasp. It delights me to think that the Divine can be found in such every day places and spaces . We encounter it without even realizing it, because we are looking for big, loud, ostentatious. Ears to hear, eyes to see…

I need the pond. It heals me. It refreshes, soothes and brings simplicity, to a life that at times, is overwhelmingly chaotic. I’m glad that Courage, which sat silent in my soul for these 6 months, decided to roar a bit this morning; demanding that joy, peace and healing, tread upon the heads of fear, dread and panic. Peace settled in like a comfy blanket; Joy romped about; Rest gently lifted away stress and chaos, then Divine love hovered, deep calling to deep.  The atmosphere of my soul found some healing and re-charging this morning. Thank you, Courage!