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A Monday meander

Stripes across the sky.

Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.

~ Rachel Carson, The Sense of Wonder 

We do not understand the earth in terms either of what it offers us or of what it requires of us, and I think it is the rule that people inevitably destroy what they do not understand.

~ Wendell Berry, The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays

New growth.

I have been trying to write this post for at least a week, maybe two.  I’m not sure why it has been so difficult to sit down and type up something that has already been written in my head.  I would attribute it to laziness, but I don’t think that’s it.  Apathy might be a better word although that seems strong and harsh since it’s not really a lack of caring.  More like a loss of blogging mojo.

Approaching the bay on the bay access road. (Assateague Island National Seashore)

As some of you might recall, I have been blogging in some format for a while.  I started in 1999.  I moved to WordPress in 2007.  (Wow.  Ten years here.)  I have written under numerous pseudonyms, but have used my own name during my tenure here at WordPress.  I am not sure how many blogs I’ve had.  Even now, I couldn’t tell you how many are relatively current because I write here, there, and other places.  Three, I think, are active (or were active before I slowed down recently).

A spit of land.

Throughout my blogging career — which is not really a career, of course, because I’ve never been paid for it — I have taken the occasional break.  Sometimes I take a break because I’m traveling or life is busy.  Sometimes I take a break because I need to get away from recording my life and just live it for a while.

In the pines.

Over the past few months, I’ve been feeling something different.  Or maybe it is closer to the truth to say I have not been feeling something.  I have not felt like blogging.  My heart has not been in it.  Almost every post has been forced.  There are days I write something in my head, but can’t find it in me to type it up and hit the Publish button because the motivation or passion or the blogging mojo just isn’t there.

A blending of grasses and trees.

For a while, I was unable to decide if this lack of passion for blogging included all writing or just blogging.  Then I realized it wasn’t just writing.  It was photography and drawing and all the things that usually speak to my soul (and allow me to speak with or through my soul).  And that’s when I knew that it was part of the depression I’ve been feeling since late last year.

The winding road.

Yesterday someone posted something on Facebook that sort of woke me up.  (Yes, in spite of all my attempts to extract myself from Facebook, I’m still there.)  It was a link to a scientific study in the journal Palaeoworld regarding the release of methane hydrate from thawing permafrost in the Arctic, and a theory that global warming from volcanoes caused the Permian mass extinction event 250 million years ago.  At the end of the abstract is this statement:

Global warming triggered by the massive release of carbon dioxide may be catastrophic, but the release of methane from hydrate may be apocalyptic. The end Permian holds an important lesson for humanity regarding the issue it faces today with greenhouse gas emissions, global warming, and climate change.

The trees on the dunes almost look as though they use their roots to go for walks on the sand.

The dramatic headline with this story was something about how life on earth as we know it could end within the next decade.  I took that with the usual grain of salt, putting it up there with the next big earthquake (the one that they say will drop California into the Pacific Ocean) or the odds of an asteroid hitting Mother Earth.  NASA, by the way, has plans to intercept a small asteroid as part of their mission to defend the planet from asteroids should any head in our direction, but that’s on hold until they know what’s going to happen with their budget.  The story is here.  In case you are worried about asteroids hitting us, the odds are 1 in 300,000 so you probably don’t need to lose any sleep over it.

More walking trees.

Now, you might find that sort of headline and story about our possible demise depressing.  I agree.  It is.  But it also made me think about how I’d want to spend my remaining days if I only had a year or five or ten to live.  Honestly, none of us know how long our lives will be and most would probably agree that life for a human on this planet is short in the grand scheme of things.

So, I took some time to ponder my priorities in life.  What are the things that bring me joy?  Connecting with others, especially family and friends, is among the list of things that bring me great joy.  Connecting is where I want to put some of my precious time.  Blogging is one form of connection for me now that I’m out here in the Middle of Nowhere, and having thought about it that way, I’m feeling newly energized to blog again.  Plus all I really had to do was say to myself, “I think I’ll quit blogging,” and my always-contrary mind said, “But wait!  You LOVE blogging!  You don’t really want to quit!”  Isn’t it funny how the mind works that way?  As soon as you say you’re going to give up something, your mind suddenly decides you must do it.

A playful ocean.

Take responsibility for your state of consciousness in the moment.

~ Eckhart Tolle

Enjoying the sun and surf.

In keeping with my desire to shake off this depression (I know it’s not quite that simple, but go with me on this one) and live life fully, I’ve been thinking about manifestos.  As sometimes happens in this strange and wonderful world, a coincidence occurred as my thoughts turned in that direction and I received an email about manifestos with a link to Lisa Sonora’s blog post How to Create Your Own Manifesto With 3 Gorgeous Examples to Inspire You.  If you followed that link, you might have noticed Sister Corita Kent’s studio rules.  My favorite is this one:

RULE NINE: Be happy whenever you can manage it. Enjoy yourself. It’s lighter than you think.

The gull looks pigeon-toed.

I am going to adopt that rule.  Because she’s right.  It IS lighter than I think.  And on that note, I’ve meandered enough for one day.  Thank you so much for stopping by and meandering along with me.  The photos are from my visit to Assateague on Saturday.  A day at Assateague is always uplifting, no matter what the weather.  I’ll probably share more photos with you soon.

Uplifted.

It looks like we might have an interesting sunset tonight.  Meet me at the Point and we’ll see what Mother Nature and Father Sky are up to this evening.  Sunset is scheduled for 7:22 PM.  It’s quite warm today (70°F last time I checked), but you might want to bring a jacket.  It cools off quickly this time of year once the sun sets.

Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂

Coming back to earth.

A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy:  156)  Beautiful sunrises and sunsets.  157)  Watching a Bald Eagle swoop in and steal something (probably a fish) from a Turkey Vulture.  It’s amazing how fast eagles can pounce.  158)  Observing the Great Blue Heron who has been visiting the pond as he or she fishes for his or her meals.  159)  South Carolina’s win yesterday.  Not that I’m a big sports fan, but it made M happy and that makes me happy.  160)  The buds on the trees announcing springtime and new growth.

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Author:

Robin is a photographer, artist, writer, wife, sometime poet, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, friend, and occasional traveler currently living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She finished a 365 commitment to get outside every day in 2011, and has turned it into a lifelong commitment taking one or more walks each day. Robin will continue to share her walks through her words and images on Breezes at Dawn. Older posts can be found at Life in the Bogs, her previous blog. Robin and her husband are in the midst of renovating the house and property they refer to as the Wabi-Sabi Ranch, 35 acres that include marsh, a dock on a tidal creek, meadows, and woodlands. Every day brings new discoveries.

30 thoughts on “A Monday meander

  1. I can relate to that feeling of depression, and I’ve been fighting it for a few months now. I attribute in to the winter and lack the of sun, and the political climate in this country, perhaps the world. Everything feels so negative, so angry. Spring is coming, and I’m hoping the sun will bring hope as well as life.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think the political climate is playing a big role in how I’ve been feeling, Carol. I don’t want to become negative, but it’s so hard to shake it off at times. I hope Spring brings hope, too. And maybe some healing and common sense. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve been feeling that lack of blog mojo as well. I’ve been at it for years too. That plus my husbands death 15 months ago has slowed my participation down a lot in visiting blogs, but I post twice a week to have some sort of discipline. I’d rather just shut it down most days. But something makes me continue. I’ve definitely gotten the lesson on beginning to live again, remembering just how short life can be. And maybe with spring and sunshine again we’ll feel better. Im sure hoping so.
    Your photos are lovely!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Angeline. I’m sorry about the loss of your husband. I did wonder (because I knew he was ill), but didn’t ask out of respect for your privacy. Hugs, and here’s hoping that spring will do the trick for all of us. 🙂

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  3. Thank you for sharing your current experiences Robin, it’s not always easy to bare our souls into the possible void of WordPress. Isn’t it interesting how we give up the things that make us happy when our souls start to feel sad and battered. I think this is the first stage we get to and if we don’t attend to ourselves then depression follows. Thank heaven for our fellow travellers, for any one can say the one thing we can hear in this moment – any one. Often for me, it’s a passing stranger who will speak and I, in that moment, will hear. It turns me around and I can lift myself up again. I think this is our journey. All the ills of the world are there – they will always be there. They will swap about and interchange and one will go to be replaced by another. And our job is to keep right on loving each other through it. Keep doing what makes you happy. Your happiness is important for the world!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’re welcome, Pauline, and thank you. 🙂 Your comment is filled with wisdoms. It’s interesting how the right person or words can come along and create just the right amount of change to keep us going.

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  4. I agree with others that the political situation has made the past few months depressing. I know I have definitely felt “off.” But, the light of spring and the flowers and buds bursting does help. I think of your top photo and your bottom two as sort of metaphors. And bird women. Yes? 🙂

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  5. I’m so glad you’ve decided to keep blogging. I would miss you and your photos and words so much. But yet….I understand feeling like you have nothing much that you want to say. I’m sort of there too…I have two or three blogs written in my head (my head, not Katie’s!) and they don’t seem to be moving into print.

    But there is hope. I saw spring when I was down in Alabama and the Carolinas, even in Tennessee…it’s not so far away. You’ve seen a bit of it yourself. It’s coming. And the days will get longer and we will be moving closer to the 4th year of this administration…day by day…and then we can work together to move him on out. And the world will be lighter.

    Karen (Karma) and I talked briefly last year about traveling to your neck of the woods this summer. I don’t know if we will actually make that happen but if we do a walk on your beach or down to your point or just a sit on your pier would make the day a good day, if it works out for you.

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  6. Robin, for the most sensitive who feel very deeply the social injustices of the world, these days are deeply challenging. I feel as you do and have worked at not judging my feelings about my not blogging. Post in my head or in draft or just not sounding coherent as I review and edit, I have come to see that this is a necessary break that I will simply honor and step away from the computer. We must be good to ourselves in these times. A long break from the Facebook madness helped me so much. Take good care of you, dear Robin. You share so much beauty even in the midst of your sadness. Thank you. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  7. It seems we have a lot of company on this journey. 🙂 Contraction and expansion, like breathing, we can’t have one without the other. I have found great solace in my daily walks and find myself asking what pleases me, as I no longer want to waste my time doing things that don’t give me joy. Our lives are precious. We all hear the clock ticking!
    I’m glad you will continue your presence here. Your work is much appreciated! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Eliza. 🙂 I know what you mean about daily walks. They make a difference in my life, too. Our weather is warming up quickly here, though, and that will cut back on my outdoor time. The flies and mosquitoes are already out. I haven’t seen them yet but imagine that means ticks as well. Ah well. Such is life down here.

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  8. Life ebbs and flows and has ups and downs. I’m glad you will be here in the blogosphere sharing your eyes and the beauty they see and your thoughts, which are often reflective of some of my own. It’s nice to have a little solidarity.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m glad you’ve decided to keep blogging, Robin ~ I look forward to your thoughts and beautiful pictures. Your posts often uplift me from my own bouts of malaise… And, like you, I find a day by the sea, in any weather, is comforting and restorative.

    The gull picture “uplifted” is beautiful! (I’ve been trying to get a shot like that for years!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Barbara. 🙂 I’ve been trying for that shot for long time, too. Usually I catch the tail end of the bird or a big blur. I got lucky with this one.

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  10. Sometimes I don’t know what I really want, what I really desire. Sometimes when I get that rumbling dissatisfaction thing I set off looking for where the blame belongs. I DECIDE things now dammit! And then of course the inner labeled one screams NO I LOVE…or that. I am it do NOT take that away from me who will i be! You will regret this. and then often the you shoulds come to visit me too!. Sometimes, even if i whine and i kick and i scream, it is good for me to take a moral inventory to find out what works, what doesnt’ work and then sometimes my own personal why, the real thing not where I place the blame. Sometimes when i write or i create I am running from letting of something uncomfortable to me, but easier and familiar to keep than to jump into what I mistakenly envision as the black hole of nothingness (thunder crash sound here) I have of late chosen to go a bit smaller, and to just do the next right thing to listen to my actions and reactions to learn what I really am.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I get that, Elisa. Lately, I don’t know what I want or who I really am most of the time. Everything feels surreal, and it’s made me feel a little lost. Going smaller and just doing the next right thing is a good way to go. 🙂

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  11. Hi Robin. I have fallen off blogging lately, mostly because I am so busy with other projects: my writing of my sci-fi collection, being on the Board of a writing festival for Fredericton, and working on a committee to restore an old church. I intend to get back to the blog because it is the best place to explore ideas. I hope you don’t quit because your posts are calming, thoughtful. I also like your photos, or rather the sequence of photos you present. There is a lot of light out there! Jane

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Jane. 🙂 I’ve been keeping up with you, but haven’t had time to comment. I see you published the first in your sci-fi series and I put it on my reading list. I’m looking forward to reading it.

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  12. I enjoy meandering along with you Robin, so I’m glad to hear that you’re planning to continue blogging. I agree it has become an amazing means of connecting with a whole new world of people. I’m still a rookie, so I can only imagine the weight of more than a decade’s worth of blogging. And for what it’s worth, it’s reassuring to know that I’m not the only one struggling to keep moving forward.
    Maybe it’s the extra methane…

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Comments are delightful and always appreciated. I will respond when I can (life is keeping me busy!), and/or come around to visit you at your place soon. Thank you!

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