Morning at the Beach

20150122-beach 001The Gulf of Mexico beach is just a 5 min. drive from my door but I haven’t gone this winter on one of those early morning photo excursions. I enjoy them so much so decided it was time to go on Thursday morning. I was motivated by my wonderful memories of joy and peace, remembering how all my senses are delighted when on the morning beach. I wanted to experience this again.

Thursday morning, however, something was wrong. I struggled to become engaged and didn’t feel my normal joy and peace. It wasn’t a problem with the beach as the water was a beautiful color, with the low tide exposing interesting patterns in the sand. The morning air was cool and the sun was gently warming my back. I walked to the water’s edge and was intrigued with a couple of starfish that had been dropped by the outgoing tide and were now being retrieved by the rising tide.

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I have been carefully choosing when to walk because of foot pain, so I did what I have done so many times in the past – I sat my fanny down on the sand and waited for the beach to come to me. Not much came to me except lots of walkers and a couple of gulls.

20150122-beach 004The problem was within me. I took some deep breaths to center myself and focused on the beach around me to catch the mood – but it didn’t happen. I felt a dullness of mind that interfered with my ability to engage and focus. My intention was to practice photographing the movement of water, and even though I took some shots, my heart wasn’t in it.

Today I am ready to admit that I am feeling this same dullness of mind in all that I do. It has taken me 10 times longer to write this blog than it normally takes me. I maintain my health through a very fine balance of self-care and medications. This time I think the balance of medications is off – and I need to cut back on a new medication for nerve pain I’m taking.

I am so thankful for my past doctor who taught me how to manage my self-care and for my current doctor who trusts me and is willing to work with me so I can make modifications as needed. I’ve looked at the weather predictions for the coming week and I think there will be some days that will be perfect for returning to the beach.

Little Orchids

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My eyes automatically focus on the big, dramatic blossoms when I walk into the orchid garden at the Naples Botanical Garden. On my last visit I did a second round with my camera and focused on capturing the small orchids.20150106-botanical garden orchids 07220150106-botanical garden orchids 10020150106-botanical garden orchids 077The small ones are just as beautiful, I just had to get up close to notice them. In fact there was one small orchid in a hanging basket that was just budding and so small I could hardly see them. I’m eager to see what they look like when they are in full bloom.

When I returned home, I realized that my favorite small orchid is growing just outside my lanai, where I hung it last Spring before we went home. How excited I was to see the bud stem when we returned to Florida in October. Now it is in full bloom.

Ny OrchidsI have a hard time getting my mind around how these delicate beauties can thrive outside, hanging on a tree. What a miracle it is that nature provides everything a plant needs when the plant is in it’s natural environment. Nature has taken care of orchids for thousands of years without this Northern transplant’s help. Truly amazing.