Wednesday, August 4, 2021

The Ocean Is Calling

I am experiencing some pretty crippling anxiety in this moment, so I thought maybe I would try to write through some of it.  It may resemble rambling, but hopefully by the end of it, my spirit is calmer and I can focus on things like, oh I don't know, my job? 

Eleven months ago, I found myself in the middle of a dark depression.  Shortly after my last post ( back in Sept 2020), where I shared I had broken down and told my husband I needed a break and I needed the ocean, I got the ocean.  Kris didn't hesitate.  He immediately began trying to figure out how to give me the ocean.  In the end, thanks to the pandemic, we got an incredible deal on an all-inclusive 4 night stay at a resort in Mexico.  Literally in less than a week, Kris came to me and said if I could just hold on till Tuesday, we would get to the ocean.  I could write an entire post dedicated to how grateful I was that God empowered him to move on my behalf that week.

I cannot even begin to tell you how helpful that trip was for me.  There was purpose in that trip.  I KNEW I needed to reconnect with my Maker.  I knew I needed the designer of the wind and waves to calm the storm in my heart and mind.  And so armed with all of the life-breathing worship songs that got me through March 2020-September 2020, I rested.  At the ocean.  I wept in a hammock listening to songs about God's power and grace and freedom, with the sound of the waves beating against the sand.  I floated in the water, letting the waves soothe the restlessness in my heart.  The trip to Mexico last September was life-changing and life-giving to me.  God renewed my heart and restored my sanity, which had begun to unravel.

I found my center in Mexico, because I realized that the ocean is where I can best see, feel, and experience God.  It isn't that I can't do that in here in the Midwest.  I can and I have to, because I can't just take off to the ocean whenever I have a whim (but boy do I wish I could!).  My soul cries out for the ocean.  I can't explain it.  If you know, you know.  Maybe for you it is the mountains, or art, or music.  Music is communion and prayer for me, but the ocean--man the ocean is where I absolutely cannot deny the magnificence and power of the God that loves me intimately.  It is like being invited into the inner sanctuary in God's temple - the place where he resides.  For me, being at the ocean is no different than being gathered into the arms of a loving parent after a fall.  

Lately, I have been feeling the depression try to creep back in.  This morning I realized once again that it's the media driving the fear, constantly shouting about the next big thing we need to be afraid of.  I'm tired of being told there is always something to fear.  I work really hard with God to fight the fear that has always surrounded me.  And the media is constantly throwing it all back in my face.  And beyond that, the divisiveness we have over masks and vaccines and the judgment if you fall on the wrong side of both of those things weighs heavy on me.

We've come full circle in this pandemic.  Two weeks to curve the spread turned into being quarantined for over a year, and there is still no end in sight.  In May, mask mandates lifted for us.  People were allowed to go back to life.  And now we're back under a mask mandate and there's talk of more quarantines.  And people on both sides crying out that masks work, but also at the same time, that they do not.  People are begging others to get a vaccine for the good of others, and the other side begging people to think and reason for themselves before getting the vaccine.  People with Covid are still dying.  People with the vaccine are also still getting Covid.  People are still dying, vaccinated or not.  This is our reality.  How on earth can anyone even take a side, when people are standing ON BOTH SIDES with pitchforks to condemn you?  

And all of this has left me feeling drained.  I feel like we are just right back where we started and one side says it's because not enough people quarantined and masked up, and the other side says that it is because we are all too afraid to get out there and just live life.  It stresses me out.  It's too much to feel and care about.  It's heavy and exhausting.  

So, October 4 can't come quick enough.  Two more months and I will be back in Mexico, back at the beach, back to the ocean where I feel the closest to the Creator-God who loves me far more than I deserve.  If I can just hang on until then...


Saltwater Heart- Switchfoot

Talking with myself in a land-locked parking lot

Cough drop tipping from my mouth like a love shot

My writer's block ink, oh, oh, oh

Sick of all the small talk, tripping non-stop

From the open-mouthed graves of the faux-hawk

Cinderblock mall, my blood clot pen, oh, oh, oh

Oh, maybe I could break clean

Yeah, maybe I could break clean

When I'm on your shore again

I can feel the ocean

I can feel your open arms

That pure emotion

I'm finally free again

Like my own explosion

When I'm on your shore again

I can feel the ocean

Saltwater running through my veins like a blind spot

Like I got caught, saltwater like your teardrop

With this saltwater heart, oh way oh

Now it's an abstract thought, but I've been thinking non-stop

'Bout the fact that my body's made most out of raindrops

With this saltwater heart, oh, oh, oh

Oh, maybe I could wash clean

Yeah, maybe I could believe

When I'm on your shore again

I can feel the ocean

I can feel your open arms

That pure emotion

I'm finally free again

Like my own explosion

When I'm on your shore again

I can feel the ocean

Oh, maybe I could wash clean

Yeah, maybe I could wash clean

All my land-locked dreams

And maybe I could believe

When I'm on your shore again

I can feel the ocean

I can feel your open arms

That pure emotion

I'm finally free again

Like my own explosion

When I'm on your shore again

I can feel the ocean

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