It literally was days ago when I used nature as therapy for the COV19 isolation in my story, How to find treasures on an eclectic beach and the earlier story on What to do when even the deer are not at the beach. This week in New Jersey the parks were closed. Originally I thought it was only state parks and national treasures such as Sandy Hook would remain open. Wrong!
The rangers were out. Even the deer crossing sign was missing! What was once a sanctuary for the weary stay-in-place renegade had become yet another inaccessible domain.
What remains of my morning treks through nature are my many iPhone photos and memories. I don’t look back in regret because those ocean-fresh air scents remain in my spirit. I look at the photos and cherish the distant roars of the Atlantic – I remember my time on the boardwalk.
I am happy because I changed. I stopped. I met nature at her door. What the crisis has given me is an appreciation for what is, as it is. I now walk in my neighborhood greeting faces I do not know, unfamiliar and not quite a replacement for my unintended commune with nature. I learn to adjust. To value each day as the gift that it is. Not to take a day for granted, and while I no longer hunt for treasures on the beach, I console myself knowing I continue to do the best I can to live each day as if it is my last because one day, it will be.
As the end of Holy week nears I remember the true meaning of the holy days. Somber reminders of the gift of light. While humanity tackles the formidable COV19, we who are believers know there is a greater power and one day (I hope it is soon) this too shall pass. I am not looking for a new normal.
I believe we will have a new, more humane, more empathetic world more resilient and more prepared for the next darkness that besets us.