Nature interpretations can create positive perspective

Genuine happiness is in flux; it can peak and dip like a calculated wave, conscious of its movement, or it can tower so high and swell with such velocity that it seems impossible for it to ever break, until, naturally and inevitably, it does.

Theresa Pfister, a&l editor

I’ve always felt a compelling bond with nature, and have been fascinated with oceans since the first time I can remember running into the Atlantic’s foamy surf at the Delaware coast when I was 4 years old.

My family and I have vacationed at the same beach town in Delaware for the past 16 years, and I still anticipate its soothing, aquatic sounds and inviting, salty smell. I became accustomed to the deep, commanding gray of the Atlantic that the portion of the First State rested on, and was astounded when I dove in its currents from different vantage points on the east coast.

New Jersey’s Atlantic was a friendly blue with lively, welcoming tides that begged to be explored. North Carolina’s Outer Banks were listless, serene and seemed pure and untouched by anything but their own maritime creatures.

The portion of ocean that stretches the coast of Miami’s South Beach is absolutely immaculate. The water is translucent and elegant, warm and polished with the quintessential tropical turquoise hue. When I drifted listlessly atop the undulating ripples of the Mediterranean Sea over the summer, I couldn’t help but think how similar the two were to each other, opposite locations, but so alike.

My disposition is like each wave I’ve ever ridden to shore, dove into, jumped, surfed or skimmed. I can let a wave carry me through the up-and-down, spit-me-out motion and life simply happens. Diving into a wave is like evading potential disasters that form throughout our lives; it’s when the waves come in sets that they become harder to avoid – fight life’s obstacles or they’ll overwhelm you.

Jumping waves is like toying with temptation. It’s fun and thrilling until your footing is lost and the force of the wave tosses you on top of the rocky, jagged side of the shore, and you’re left with burning cuts and salt-stinging eyes.

Surfing is the best relationship with a wave I’ve ever known. It is an extremely challenging novelty that many people would like to master, or at least try. Happiness doesn’t come easy, but it is possible. It took me hours of work and frustration before I finally rode my first wave, but it was worth it.

My time spent living in “Blue Crush” was limited to only a few moments, but after countless hesitations, slips and falls, I was finally aware of which wave to choose to ride out of a set, when to paddle and when to stand up.

It is easy to give up on feeling happy when the decision to jump, dive or surf is constantly in front of us. We can work with life and create our own happiness if we are conscious of our surroundings and understand its fleeting essence.

Obtaining happiness is perpetual work, and like the different parts of the same ocean, happiness looks different in different places, but it always delivers the same buzzing feeling if we’re open and accepting of it.

It’s natural to search for immaculate blue waters, but tranquility can be created and discovered within the ripples of a lake.

THERESA PFISTER

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