The spectrum went from tan to gray, with a slightly green mass in between. The neutrality painted the backdrop for the morning. That slight green, sometimes blue, is what draws us out West. The sun has yet to break through the clouds, and the sea is not at rest. It rises and falls as far as I can see, pulsating, ebbing, and flowing.
Helicopters fly far out near the horizon, as a sea otter floats by on its back with paws brushing the whiskers on its face. I know that the ocean in all of its vastness is teeming with life, but this otter is the only thing I can see from where I sit in the sand. This is the first time I’ve seen an otter in the wild. It is a connecting experience as I was swimming in that same spot yesterday. Though this time feels as if it belongs to me along with this space I am reminded that we are all in a shared space, and this space connects us.
Nature draws out the soul. The sounds of leaves crunching underfoot along the trails and the sound of waves crashing on the shore both bring my thoughts inward yet expand my mind outward. I find insight into self yet simultaneously get drawn into the world around me and the possibilities that await.
Shared spaces create shared experiences, and on trails and shorelines alike, I have heard many tails. We are not far removed from the lives around us. Trails and shorelines have heard our stories as mountains and waves create the backdrops. Traumas have been spoken, fears and doubts have been offered up for exploration, and these spaces create those opportunities.
We are Connected
In connection, we open up doors previously locked. Friends become closer, veils are pulled back, if only a little, giving insight into who we are and who they are. To truly know someone is a gift, and to be known brings strength to our lives, as we find one who will respond with us to our inner dialogue, and someone who thinks of our struggles and sends their prayers or kindness even when we are not near.
Whether we are swimming with otters or walking with a friend on a dusty trail, we are connected, and in that connection, we can become known to one another. To be known is the ability to be ourselves in the presence of someone else, and they will see the best and the worst of who we are. There will be laughter, there will be tears, there will be tough talks, and most of all someone to walk beside you through it all.