Fighting Nature

Yesterday it was sunny and in the 60s in December in North Carolina. I love NC with its ever-changing weather. They say here that if you don’t like the weather today then check back next week because it will surely be different. Today the weather is rainy and in the 50s, I love it. Tomorrow will be cooler more and then by Christmas Eve we will be back up to pushing 70.

I knew the weather would be changing so I took my younger two to the boat yesterday. We drove the two hours without much fuss and then on the boat, just the three of us. I motored out of the marina and onto the Pamlico until we found some open space deep enough to set the sail. There’s just something to setting the sail and turning off the engine that is difficult to explain. The peace? The power? The quiet? When the wind fills up the sail and the boat slides through the water I know that life is going to be okay.

Maybe it’s the rules of nature? Maybe that’s the reason I love being near the water? When the rest of the world is in chaos, nature is firm, solid. Nature never fails to do what she wants to do. She brings her storms and her winds; her rain and her sun. She brings these and we must submit to them, work around them. Nature is a guarantee of things to come. You can count on her changing her mind and on her making her rounds.

The sun will rise and set again. The winds will come and leave. The rains will fall and the rivers will fill. Nature. Nature will change her course with the seasons but she will always continue. As humans we can either fight her or welcome her and that can make such a difference. In the boat when I face up wind I have very little hope of sailing, yet when I turn and face downwind I can sail as far as the water allows.There is a constant bargaining with her as I attempt to arrive at my destination. Nature is always true to herself, she knows who she is.

Back in the city, however, there is the chaos. The constant fighting of nature and never allowing her to be: the coats and umbrellas, the cars and the horns, the noise of the people, the lights and decorations. People have always fought Nature like no other being on the planet. That, I think, is what sets us apart so much. Without fighting Nature, there would be no libraries, no hospitals, no towns. Fighting her has its place. Harnessing her, though? That has power.┬áHarness the wind and I can sail. Others harness the wind for electricity. How many ways do we harness energy from her? wind, water, sun, coal, oil, fire… Without her we are nothing. We cannot even eat without bargaining with her.

When I leave the chaos and join Nature in her fury, I feel her power and I am comforted. I know that despite everything, she will continue her patterns. She will continue well beyond anything I ever do. When people leave her alone, she will turn their creations back to dust. Nature. When we die we will be turned back to dust as well. She is a reminder to me that the chaos is limited. No matter what others say or do, they are limited. I am renewed having emersed myself in her, ready to live another day in the chaos.

thank you for reading,

me

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Elegance?

What is elegance? How does one show elegance? Is elegance achievable?

Miriam Webster defines elegance as “A: refined grace or dignified propriety. B: tasteful richness of design or ornamentation, the sumptuous elegance of the furnishings. C: dignified gracefulness or restrained beauty of style, the essay is marked by lucidity, wit, and elegance. D: scientific precision, neatness, and simplicity, the elegance of a mathematical proof.”

And Wikipedia defines elegance as “beauty that shows unusual effectiveness and simplicity. It is frequently used as a standard of tastefulness particularly in the areas of visual design, decoration, the sciences, and the aesthetics of mathematics. Elegant things exhibit refined grace and dignified propriety.”

What is it about elegance that calls for me?

I think as I write tonight that elegance appeals to me due to its simplicity, its calm, it’s poise all showing a lack of chaos. Chaos is how I’ve often described my life, my thoughts, even myself. I’m a storm, a thundering mess of noise inside. So elegance speaks to me. A quiet, peaceful, graceful beauty to be attained. I want elegance to be how I describe myself: I want it to be how others describe me. “She is the elegant one.; the one there who has no fear, no care for things but who is always peaceful and happy.” That sounds good.

Being elegant would mean that I would be noticed for my calm rather than the storm that I’ve brought with me. Or maybe I will be the calm before the storm? Or the peace afterward?

It’s an interesting place to be. I love who I am becoming and I love helping others to find peace and sanctuary in my writing. Yet, I am the storm; the hurricane has been me. Can I be both? Can I be the fury when needed and the calm when necessary? Can I continue to be who I am while allowing others the room to be who they are meant to be? Chaos, after all, is still beautiful. Should I tame the chaos?

I know the chaos well now. I’ve marked its passage through my life and I am intimately familiar with it. But have I now mastered my chaos? Does it rule me no longer? It is still there. I can feel it sitting, waiting to pounce. But does it no longer have the control it once did? Have I made chaos my friend?

These are some of my thoughts tonight as I prepare for bed. I entertain the idea of elegance, such that, maybe I may attain it. Yet, now loving myself, I no longer fear my chaos, my personal storms that have made me this way. Shall I truly transition from fear to peace? Shall I stand taller, quieter now that my storms begin to pass? Shall I be elegant?

thank you for reading,

me