wave: seeking to stay buoyant in life’s choppy waters

wave - beach - boots - sea - seeking to stay buoyant in life's choppy waters - (C) joylenton @poetryjoy.com

“Who is like you, Lord God Almighty? You, Lord, are mighty, and your faithfulness surrounds you. You rule over the surging sea; when its waves mount up, you still them.” — Psalm 89:8-9 NIV

Each summer I yearn to go to the coast, inhale the ozone and watch waves rise, foam and fall. It would be such a soothing sight, calming and restorative to my soul. Who wouldn’t want to sit, observe (people-watch) and breathe in the view or swim and be cradled by lapping water and get wet through? Even a virtual non-swimmer like me relishes such thoughts.

Sadly, the limitations of having M.E and chronic illness, including impaired mobility, hypersensitivity to light, a pain-filled, uncooperative body that doesn’t cope well with exertion, humidity or heat, coupled with travel-induced fatigue, and Raynaud’s Syndrome causing shivers and blanching at the slightest sea breeze, make it rather problematical for me now.

Instead, I remember times past, decades ago, when I was able to enjoy watching waves without those restrictions. We spent several hot summer days on the local beaches, getting sand in our sandwiches, paddling or swimming in the sea, playing games with the children, and marvelling at our suntanned faces and limbs. Now I muse on waves as a poet might do because they have such great symbolism too.

waves - Who wouldn't want to sit, observe (people-watch) and breathe in the view or swim and be cradled by lapping water and get wet through_ quote (C) joylenton @poetryjoy.com

The wave we need

We are paddling furiously
as if it all depends on us,
not on the tide or the rhythm

of the sea. Fearing falling,
we forget to lean
into the waves, forget

to check our position
and what we might have
to depend on. Forget, too,

to relax our bodies
into suppleness,
cut ourselves some slack.

Instead, we waver,
like uncertain skittles,
wobble around,

choke, sink close
to drowning. Until we hear
a calming voice calling,

speaking softly
to our souls, then more
urgently than before. His voice

rises clearly above and cuts
across the choppy waters,
urging us to let him be

the wave we need, the support
to lift us when we fall, the one
who carries us effortlessly.
© joylenton

wave - “Perhaps this is the most important thing for me to take back from beach-living quote by Anne Morrow Lindbergh in Gift From the Sea @poetryjoy.com

If you, like me, would appreciate a reminder of hearing waves breaking on the seashore, maybe this short sea breathing technique video from former M.E sufferer, meditation  author and creative communicator  Liz Babbs will help, and relax your soul. 🙂 ❤

A sea change season

bird at blakeney quay - PJ file

The bird sitting proud on its perch looked down loftily, maybe wondering at the peculiarity of human beings.

I leant on my stick and breathed in sea air. Gulped greedily as if I was drowning, starved of oxygen.

And maybe I was. Drowning for a difference, starving for more than the life I’d been living, desperate for change.

Needing to exhale out the old and breathe deep of the new.

Too many days spent captive in the house. Bound by weakness, sickness and weariness for months on end.

I was starving for the light outside. Feeling freedom calling in my veins. My soul ached for ocean but I’d settle for sea or even a riverside view.

I wanted to wend my way to water, feel sea breeze and feel alive again. Do you ever get that feeling?

It isn’t necessary to have chronic illness to experience moments of feeling confined and constrained by circumstances.

To have a longing to break free from our normality. Live life with deeper awareness and passion.

And I’m discovering the best sort of freedom is sensed inwardly, when we know we are loved by God and can live and love freely ourselves because He lives within.

Now, a healing of sorts had enabled me to tread into new territory. A gift of grace equipping me to step outside the house at last.

So I was able to sample the delights of Blakeney Quay on my beloved’s birthday last month. I hope the photographs I took will offer a taste of the quay for you too if you also yearn for water.

‘By still waters’

blakeney quay sea - PJ file

If you go down to the quay today

and lift your eyes a while,

you may slowly gaze at snake of sea

threading its fine ribbon of blue

through swathes of soft shoreline

where its held fast at bay

And if you linger long enough,

you’ll hear a siren-song

of gulls wheeling their way clear of land

and sea as they lift free

with a hue and cry, barreling high

toward vast stretch of sky

But boats lie idling, still as statues

on the sand, apart from

a brave few out on far horizon

Bobbing with will of wind

Resisting lure of land and going

wherever love sends them

©JoyLenton2015

boats beached at blakeney quay - PJ file

beauty of blakeney collage - PJ

The heat is on

The heat is on.

Time to seek some shade.

Find ways to stay cool, calm and collected.

I love the long, sunny days but I’m fazed and frazzled by heat-waves. Maybe you too?

It’s too hot to think straight, write eloquently (or much at all, truth be told) or be active in any way.

I’ve been taking a social media and blogging break which I desperately needed.

My health has been challenging for some time, with increased weakness, pain and fatigue, so rest and recuperation remain my top priority.

And as I recover some strength, pacing my ‘activities’ carefully, I want to just touch base with you as a way of making a gradual return to my usual routines.

I’m largely housebound with M.E and chronic illness, and going on holiday is a distant dream, but there’s no harm in taking myself there by the power of imagination.

Which is what I have done with the poetic summer snippets below that were written some time ago.

I share them now as a way to say “Hi. I’m still here”, even though I may be struggling with feeling further flattened by the heat and humidity we have now in the UK!

You are not forgotten and I miss our conversations here.

Hope the weather is suiting you, wherever you are, and you can make the most of warm, sunny days.

With blessings and love until we meet again. Xx 🙂

Come away with me beach poem pin image

‘Sunbathing’

Solid clumps of

people

sticking to

hot blades of

grass

The park abounds in

bodies

Frozen marrows of

idle

flesh which

blinks at frequent

intervals

They stir softly in

slumber

Deadened senses of

minds

groping after

clarity

focusing on nothing

Self-instincts admit

to ~ inactivity

©JoyLenton2014

bodies ~ sunbathing in the park poem pin image