Mother Nature Soothes My Soul
Last weekend’s afternoon mountain biking ride with my fiancé was less than…smooth.
I am not sure if it was the recent rains that redistributed the already rocky path, the fact that my autumn allergies were completely out of control, the fact that I had not been on a bike in five days (I have a short attention span and my skillz dramatically vanished over the past five days), or just an off day, but it was definitely more of a rough ride than usual.
The highlight of our afternoon ride was coming face-to-face with a sweet female deer. There is nothing like mother nature to sooth a weary soul, replenish a broken spirit, and reinvigorate a lethargic energy.
Seeing this deer transported me back to a magical experience from my youth.
My parents and I were on a camping trip somewhere deep (or high) in the Rocky Mountains. After driving all day, we finally settled on a very remote campground, chose the perfect site, and my parents started the usual dance of cranking our trusty Palomino pop-up camper, while at the same time trying to level our trusty red Silverado, in order for the tiny camper fridge to work.
It was always a long and arduous process, and while my parents’ camaraderie was often entertaining, on this particular evening, I did not care to get caught in their crossfire, so I took off on my own to explore.
After a few minutes of walking, I stumbled upon a clear path leading to…who knows?
But it was somewhere I felt inclined to see.
At the end of the path, I arrived at the most beautiful, clear water lake I had ever seen in my young adolescent life. As I stood on the shore, feeling a bit like Christopher Columbus when he discovered The New World, and complimenting myself on discovering this untapped treasure, a female deer trotted down from the mountainside to the opposite side of the lake from where I stood.
She proceeded to take a long, refreshing drink and as I stood, mesmerized, watching her, I must have made a sound, because she started and looked directly to the spot where I was planted across the lake.
That deer looked straight into my eyes. She held me in a trance of the longest staring contest I have ever experienced.
I felt almost otherworldly, as I had never before encountered such an intimate moment with a wild creature.
Once she realized I was not a threat, she went back to her evening drink of fresh mountain water. Once finished, she looked at me once again and we locked eyes. Then, as quickly as she arrived, she was gone, into the woods and safely back to her deer friends, to begin their evening adventures.
I walked slowly back to the trail which led to the road, where I found my parents still setting up our campsite. I excitedly told them about the magical lake I had discovered as well as the deer friend I had made.
I was a bit of a storyteller in my youth, so my parents never really knew if what I said was truth, or fabricated imagination.
That deer was every bit as real as I was. She cast a spell upon my younger self; which I believe, coupled with many other amazing experiences, has knitted together my intense love and appreciation for nature.
When I saw this particular deer on our recent mountain biking adventure, I recalled the one I saw as a child. While I am sure there is no relation, staring into the eyes of a wild animal is a feeling of empowerment and awe like no other.
Two creatures, very different, yet both molded by the same heavenly hands. Both children of the same heavenly Creator, sharing the forest, on a kismet-inspired Sunday afternoon. My ride may have been off, but the magic of this moment was nothing short of bullseye perfection.
“7 But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds in the sky, and they will tell you; 8 or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish in the sea inform you. 9 Which of all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? 10 In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.“Job 12:7-10
Anderson Judith A
Loved this…. I too know the magic of a moment like you had…And I thank the Lord for allowing me to experience such an amazing moment ❤️🤗😘🙏