Realising what I should have known

On the 30th March 2013 I embarked on an adventure. I moved to Scotland, Aberdeen specifically, for six months. During this time I learned an exceptional amount, not just gaining knowledge from the work I did during my time there but also about myself as a person. I had wonderful and memorable experiences, my eyes were truly opened and my spirit awakened to the beauty of Scotland. (A post about this Scottish experience will follow shortly).
Today however amidst my reflections upon the journey I made I had a realization. I found myself strongly missing and longing for Scotland, becoming overcome by nostalgia. Once I began to reflect on the details of what I was missing, people came to mind, certain moments in particular and places. The strongest sensation however was purely a feeling of loss. Loss of what?, this became the question I aimed to answer. I used my time in Scotland as best I could to travel and explore the wilderness and vastness of the country. I realized that what I missed most and what my feeling of loss was attributed to was how awake and excited I had felt. When I began to assess where the root of this feeling came from I settled on the sense of awe that overcame me on numerous occasions in numerous places. That feeling of disbelief at what your seeing and witnessing, of being so grateful for the world we live in and inspired by what surrounds and is on offer. I somehow allowed myself to associate this attitude with Scotland alone. Why? I have been known to vocally express my love form Ireland, my homeland yet I seem to not allow myself to appreciate it as completely as I do other countries. There is wonder in the everyday too and I think sometimes I forget that or become numb to it. Perhaps what is needed is to adopt the persona of a tourist and try to see my home as a tourist would. Step back and really see what’s in front of me. How lucky I am. After all in a place unknown to you every detail is wondrous, previously unseen but what is it that makes it wondrous? For me its always an emotional link, things that capture me completely. Its a shiver that lets you know something special is happening. I honestly do find Ireland to be a staggeringly beautiful place, a place of contradictions and intense visual grace. Seasonally there is a vast change not only in light but in the atmosphere of this country and its this transformation and opposition I am drawn to. My personal story begins in this country and so there will never be a place I am more wholly connected to.
To show that I am beginning right now to try and see, love and live in the country of my birth completely and honestly I spontaneously took this picture. I was walking to a dental appointment, about as normal an event as can be, strolling through a tiny town in Clare called Sixmilebridge and my eye was captured by this building. It summarizes perfectly the part of Ireland I come from, caught between past and present, hauntingly beautiful. When I look at this place and around the area I have grown up in it is home but it is also amazing, peaceful like nowhere else and vibrant. I am so proud of the heritage I descend from and of the culture evident all around. There is a magic to this place, a mystery in the wind, a calling to look closer.
I promise to listen and from this point on see clearly.

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