Gloomy to Glorious
Photo above and writing below are from August 6, 2020
It is a grey, wet day here in Seattle . Some call it gloomy. I just call it glorious. Life-giving water drenching the atmosphere, replenishing lakes and streams, refreshing dry soil, bestowing floral blooming power, and saturating evergreens with strength to raise their branches toward the heavens. It's my chance to cuddle on the couch with Gracie, feel her tiny heart beat beneath furry softness in one hand, and soothing warmth of coffee-filled ceramic in the other. I absorb this reality and reflect on the gift of wellness. My soul swells with gratitude for my God who has held my hand and my existence through darkness back into life... from a gloomy to glorious life
A life that is in love with water in all forms. A life that longs to be at the edge of the shore - especially the seashore, but anywhere there is water, really. I didn't realize it at first, but that's where I needed to be over and over and over this summer. It played a vital part in restoring my soul... and bringing me from gloomy to glorious.
As I think on this, it occurs to me that God has walked me through Psalm 23 over the past 8 weeks that I've been on medical leave. Metophorically, He made me lie down in green pastures, as I have taken this time of rest and healing. It was a time rich with an abundance to feed me in every way - emotionally, mentally, spiritually, physically... even socially. He led me beside still waters, overflowing with His artistic expression and majesty that hydrated my mind and spirit. He taught me how to not fear and that anxiety is an enemy that can more easily be slayed with the weapons (coping tools, strategies, etc.) he laid on the table before me so that I am equipped to live in peace, even in the midst of chaos around me. His goodness and mercy sustain me, even when the world is oppressive and malevolent, and I am excited to dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
Below are just a few photos taken during this time of rejuvenation. Notice all the... WATERS! If one didn't know, they would think I just took an 8 week vacation, but trust me when I say that every experience displayed in the photos below were therapeutic and absolutely essential to my health. I needed to step outside of the concrete and sirens and honking of horns and viral/social-induced pandemonium to the tranquility of His creation, far away from the negative energy of the city, or by design, guarded from it (close to the city, but in nature preserved within it). There are dozens of examples and explanations and insights I could share, but I will just share some of it now in pictures.
Before I do, I will just quickly say that I am WELL now!!! I return to work on Monday, and I am looking forward to it!
Enjoy the beauty captured below. I recommend turning the volume up for the videos, and expanding them to full screen.
Trip to Tahuya Lake
June 22 - Leaving the ferry dock in Seattle to Bremerton
Mt. Rainier from inside the ferry, through the windows, thus the glare.
Pulling into the Bremerton ferry dock, Olympic Mountains in the background
Tahuya Lake, 30 minutes from the ferry
Surrounded by peace-producing blue and green beauty
June 23 - Good morning, Tahuya Lake!
Families of geese and ducks out for a morning swim on the lake
Awww, look at the babies! They're bigger babies, but look at the fluff on their heads. This makes my heart smile.
Trip to Pacific Beach, Washington Coast
July 7 - view from the deck of our cabin
Do you think Gracie loves the beach as much as I do???
Chillin' and watching the waves from the deck. Is it my imagination or do they both look like they're just tolerating the photo shoot.
Pacific Beach sunset
July 8 - Dark cloudy morning on the beach, but nice sun breaks
July 9 - Goodbye Pacific Beach - we'll be back soon!
Daily walks at Alki Beach, Puget Sound/Seattle
Palm trees? I never saw the palm trees here before!
Blue Heron slow-walking through the water - this was fascinating to watch. What I was unable to capture was a bald eagle fiercely diving into the water a little while later to catch and fly off with his breakfast. It was a magnificent sight!
This anchor was a new discovery, as I'd never been to this part of the beach before
Space Needle and Ferry, taken from Alki Beach
Alki Beach Seagulls
Visit to Kubota Gardens, Seattle, Washington
This dragonfly actually let me get mere inches away from him! I waited for a long time, hoping he would spread his wings open, but you can't always get what you want! I decided he looked like he was praying. Haha! I love his color!
I hiked to the top of these waterfalls (from a lot lower than this) where there were places to sit. I had brought a book that I'm reading by Ann Voskamp titled, The Broken Way (excellent book, by the way!) It was so relaxing to sit there reading while listening to the water.
I loved this area with the bridge. The water was so still that it's almost hard to see where the foliage ends and the water begins. So peaceful.
Visit to Green Lake - Seattle, Washington
August 4 - I decided I needed a little trip down memory lane. When I was a little girl, my family lived in the University District in Seattle. One of my fondest memories during that time is of the frequent trips my mom and I took to Green Lake, which was fairly close to home, to feed the ducks. That was, of course, before knowledge that feeding the ducks bread is bad for them, but oh, how I was thoroughly delighted by every minute of it back then!!! I brought my sketch book on this outing, and sat on the bench with Gracie and did some sketching, and watched the ducks. Thanks for all the childhood memories, Mom!
Gracie: "Mom! Did you see that duck???"
"I want to jump in after him sooooo bad!!!"
Gracie is a very quiet dog, so listen close and you'll hear her whining.
Time to go home, with Gracie leading the way.
1 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.