I get up each morning and am grateful for the day. I’m thankful for dewdrops on pine needles and cobwebs glimmering in the morning light. I’m thankful that my old rowboat still manages to carry me across still water. I’m thankful for each surprise I find along the way.
This morning I chanced upon a soft-shelled turtle while I was rowing through the shallow water along the eastern shoreline. Surprisingly, the turtle, whose flat, gray shell was about the size and shape of a serving platter, didn’t swim away on my approach. Instead, it stayed still, and so did I. We watched each other for a few minutes until it swam off, and I rowed on. For a brief moment before it left, our two worlds overlapped. I’m thankful for that and for the many other times when my encounters with nature have helped me better understand how other beings live.
I don’t do much traveling yet I feel like I span distances every time I look closely at the smallest creatures. The worlds of spiders, snakes, little green tree frogs, anoles, bees, wasps and butterflies are full of fascinating facts and behaviors. I love watching and learning about often-overlooked creatures and I’m glad I take time — make time — to get to know them better.
A few nights ago, I couldn’t sleep, so I got dressed and went outside. It was a moonless night, but the sky was bright with billions of stars. It made me realize how rarely I go outside at night and when I do, how rarely I look up. But the sky — oh, my! — the sky was amazing. I’m thankful that my restlessness led me outside. I’m thankful that I looked up to see such an inspiring sight.
The world can be an incredibly wonderful place. It can also be scary and, at times, unbearable. News of terrorist attacks, environmental changes, loss of wildlife and destruction of plant habitat can have devastating effects on people who care.
A few months ago, I lost a friend to suicide. Although I may never know why she took her life, I know she was a sensitive person who deeply cared about environmental issues. I miss her and wish she was still here.
With Thanksgiving just a few days away, many of us will be thinking about things that make us grateful. Good health, secure work, a safe place to live, food on the table and loved ones to share it with are all big and important reasons for gratitude.
But they’re not the only reasons. There is gratitude to be gleaned from a spider spinning a web or the sun setting over the horizon. There is peace to be had listening to a bird song or wind blowing through the leaves.
When the woes of the world are too much, nature offers a release. I’m thankful for the little things because they play a big part in putting life’s troubles in perspective.
I am thankful for Facebook, for the medium which allows me to read your thoughtful and inspiring messages and enjoy your amazing photography. xoxoxo Sarah HighReplyDelete
Facebook has given us such a wonderful path to new friends, images and perspectives. Thank you, Sarah, for taking the time to look at my pictures and read my writings. ��Delete
Even though I do not comment often enough, be assured your blog is one more thing I am thankful for. It is comforting and inspiring and you are darned good at it. Thank you, Sherry, for sharing your life with us.ReplyDelete
Rennie - thank you so much for taking the time to post a comment and for the kind words about my blog. I write because I enjoy sharing the observations I make with others but because it's a blog and sent into the netherland of cyberspace, I never know if anyone is really seeing or reading what I post. That's why your comments are so special to me. Thank you again. Lots more to come!Delete
You are so right...my kids say that I am easily amused because I get such joy out of the littlest things...from leaves to stars to birds...all the wonders of the world.ReplyDelete
Your kids might call it 'easily amused' but I think of it as being atuned to your environment. There's so much to see - so many wonders that most people miss because they don't take time to look. You do, which in my mind is special.Delete