A Need for Place
We had a difficult week. We did a quick trip to Texas to help our 50 year old, very accomplished and independent baby girl who was scheduled for surgery last Friday. It was a fast-growing lump on her thyroid that might be cancer. All is well with her, but we are feeling the aftermath of the stress when someone we love develops a serious health issue.
During this time we had a couple of really early mornings, over-the-top stressful problems with our airline tickets, and it was really hot and humid in southern Texas. All of these impact my body and mind because of fibromyalgia. I have learned how to take care of myself, but sometimes life is hard and I can’t seem to do enough to counter the stress. I told my children, as they were growing up, that life isn’t fair. It isn’t. It’s hard.
Michael Watson wrote a post this past week called The Power of Place. Michael’s identity has been shaped by his dual presence in Native and Anglo culture. This post was in response to the Native American gathering in North Dakota to protect their sacred places from destruction by the building of the oil pipeline. Michael helps us understand the different world views that are clashing as Natives and capitalists come face to face. I always appreciate how much I learn from Michael’s posts because the Native world view is so different. What struck me most in Michael’s words was this:
I was raised to understand that places have the capacity to heal us. They may also hold us, offering safety and comfort, and, as Don Juan famously said, power.
I think JB and I are looking for comfort, healing and safety in place. As we were returning home we both made the decision that we need to spend a few days in familiar places in northern Michigan before we head to Florida. I have been culling photo files and find that I stop to study those photos of places that have a special feel. All of them places where I felt the power of life flow through me. Places where I feel the presence of God.
The places that we are seeking right now are not grand scenes, like World Heritage Sights or the U.S. National Parks. We seek them out, are moved by their majesty, and they enrich our lives. But these are not what I need right now. I need places that are simple and pure, that sooth and calm, that heal. These are places that allow me to be with myself while being aware of where I am. These are the places in nature where I am at home within myself.
I was a healer in a part of my working life and I respect our ability to heal in body, spirit, and mind. I have experienced this powerful healing within the bonds of human relationship and have been a part of helping others heal. What Michael helped me realize is how much I need nature for healing and growth. To use a popular phrase in sociology and psychology, I need both nurture and nature. I hope we have enough time to heal our planet so my new great-granddaughter will be able to find her places of healing.
Linked to The Daily Post: Recharge.