Finding my inner calm

Have you ever had one of those days, when your inner calm lines up with the outer world?  Today, for me, was one of those days.  They have been few and far between in my past, but thankfully, I’ve begun to tap into this important and wonderful resource.

For decades, I’ve rarely felt calm inside; in fact, I could count the times on the fingers of my two hands.  Some of those instances stick out in my mind, though.  In 1997, snorkeling in those cenotes in the Yucatan — inner peace absolutely overwhelmed me then.  And oddly, that was in spite of the fact that my husband was calling me several times a day, and wondering why I wasn’t in the room.  I’m in sunny Mexico, in July — what did he expect?

But as soon as I slid into that clean, clear water — purified through yards of limestone above — nothing else mattered.  I was in a place of deep history and of peace, and I sensed what I had been missing, that day.  Oddly, though, I felt this not with the tremendous guilt and regret that colored most of the past in my mind; rather, I was able to find that rare feeling of calm, and I rejoiced in my heart.

Other times of my life, I’ve had more fleeting feelings of that inner calm, and oddly enough, one of them is a memory from 44 years ago, in Turkey.  It also involved water.  Stepping into the Aegean Sea, with snorkel, mask, and flippers, I had my very first taste of the incredible contentment I felt whenever I put my face-mask into the water.  I’m sure I didn’t think of the feeling in those terms, when I was 8, but the memory is as clear and marvelous in my mind as it was that first day.

Something about the water calls me — a characteristic I can’t define, but one which I always feel.  I see all the life beneath the waves, and I connect with it in a way I wish I could explain.  I feel as though I am somehow more me when I am moving lazily along, flapping my fins, and so much at ease.  I found a few pictures from that first trip to Mexico, in 1997;

Goldentail Moray Eel
Image courtesy:

these below are not my pictures, but show some of the lovely fish I saw at a gorgeous underwater park, Xcaret, with a huge inlet from the sea..

The Parrot fish chews up coral and makes sand
Image courtesy:

I remember hearing the crunch of the parrot-fishes’ teeth as they chewed the coral and made sand.  I remember swimming quite a distance with a needle fish who decided to stick right by me.  Beautiful damsel-fish, fast-moving convict tangs,

Convict Tangs
Image courtesy: Keoki Stender

even moray eels and barracuda are harbingers of calm and quiet to me.

Today, I felt this same sense of calm as I sat outside in the sun, soaking up warmth and vitamin D, and talking with a friend’s granddaughter.  I felt content —  happy, even, with myself, my soul, my body, and the cosmos around me.  I found a little pocket of peace, and I will find a way to make that part of every single day. I think it’s time to believe that I can, and the right time for me to begin.


6 responses to “Finding my inner calm

  1. Nice post Judith. I have not tried this and would probably not dare to do it as water scares me big time. I love watching horizon above the water. We all have to find our own place to have peace.

    • I certainly understand finding our own space to be calm. I was exposed to snorkeling so young that it feels like it has always been a part of my life, although I didn’t do it for years. I won’t wait that long again!

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