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Where is YOUR place?

When I lived in Victoria, the pull to connect with nature invariably drew me to the oceanfront, where breathing in the crispness of the salty, seaweed-scented air and watching the sun come alive in scattered sparkles on the tips of the waves was refreshing, renewing.

The ocean was life to me, invigorating and powerful, so vast and seemingly limitless yet, somehow, contained in and part of my own identity.

The ocean was MY place.

Smooth Pebbles

At one time I believed that I could never, would never, live apart from that ocean… that if I were to move away, somehow I’d be leaving a piece of myself behind and with it, my happiness.

But, one day, I did leave.

And now that I’ve made a new home, far from any ocean, I have discovered that my identity isn’t something held captive by another geography… and that happiness isn’t reliant upon my surroundings.

Leaving the place I once thought of as defining who I am is empowering me with the joyful lesson that happiness and contentment may be found wherever and whenever I choose to take it.

#fmsphotoaday May 19 - Alone

The water still draws me. Now, in place of the ocean’s navy blue depths I am blessed by strength and inspiration in another form, a river that changes colour depending on the whim of the light and movement of the air – today, glowing turquoise; tomorrow, perhaps a hazy teal.

The difference, now, is that instead of expecting my surroundings to define my identity, I am free to let the me I already am drink in their beauty, learn from their force, grow by appreciating their depth.

“My place” is wherever I want it to be.

Where is YOUR place?
Please share!

NaBloPoMo June 2014

(Originally posted in March, 2012.)

Laurel Storey, CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher. Writer, reader, tangler, iPhoneographer, cat herder, learner of French and Italian, crocheter, needle felter, on-and-off politics junkie, 80s music trivia freak, ongoing work in progress.

{ 38 comments… add one }
  • Laura June 26, 2014

    I love the water and promise myself someday I will live near an ocean. But in the meantime, my place is in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains.
    Laura recently posted… The year’s longest day at the Yellow HouseMy Profile

  • Ana
    June 26, 2014

    I have always said I want to be a taxi ride away from a city, and that has always been true for me in the places I have chosen. I want art galleries, theaters, museums, movies, great restaurants and shops etc etc in close reach. If that place has beautiful hills and the sea close by even better. Add a good climate – mild but warm and it is perfect 🙂 But I can see what you’re saying that you can be happy anywhere. It’s also true that some people would never be happy anywhere. I just think some places are easier to be happy in than others.
    Ana recently posted… Divorce In AmericaMy Profile

    • Laurel Regan
      June 27, 2014

      I am definitely a city person myself, so I totally relate! Except for the rain and cost of living, both Victoria (where I’m from) and Vancouver, BC tick all the boxes including nature and climate.
      Laurel Regan recently posted… Photo Friday: GreenMy Profile

  • Carol Graham
    June 26, 2014

    That’s right — I forgot that you used to live in Victoria. If you have read my last two blog posts, they are about my dog and sheep sitting for my daughter – in Qualicum Beach. I don’t know how you ever left this incredibly beautiful country!
    If I could live anywhere — this is where it would be
    Carol Graham recently posted… Will a Day at the Spa Remove the Smell of Sheep?My Profile

  • Alana
    June 26, 2014

    My place is in upstate New York, where I see hills and green around me, even if I am in downtown Binghamton, where I work.
    Alana recently posted… Chicken FatMy Profile

  • Lana June 26, 2014

    One of the best parts of living near Seattle is the diversity – mountains, water, city, country. I do love it here – but I wish the weather was better 🙂
    Lana recently posted… My Son Found His PassionMy Profile

  • Karen
    June 26, 2014

    I’m actually from Victoria too, though I’ve lived in Ottawa more than 35 years now. But whenever I go home–and yes, it’s still my home–I know that the coast is where I belong. I stand taller there, I feel better, and I know that one day I’ll live there again.
    Karen recently posted… Facebook betrayal and…ducksMy Profile

  • Rajlakshmi June 26, 2014

    that’s a wonderful ideology to live by. I guess my place in the hills. Even when I lived in the midst of concrete and skyscrapers I would run off to hilly places during weekends.
    Rajlakshmi recently posted… Love at first punch! – Part IIMy Profile

  • Terri June 26, 2014

    i love the ocean and i miss living so close to it
    Terri recently posted… Your face with Social MediaMy Profile

  • Kajal June 26, 2014

    That’s a beautiful emotion shared. Its true happiness is where the heart wants to find happiness and is not limited to geography or situations.

    For me happiness is where my daughters is … (too much! 😛 )
    Kajal recently posted… GubbareMy Profile

  • Beloo Mehra
    June 27, 2014

    What a beautiful post, Laurel! There is something so gentle about the way you describe the emotional connect you felt and continue to feel with your surroundings. And what I appreciate most is the way you speak of the realization that that was in fact a connection with something much deeper inside, the place where the real happiness and contentment reside. Thanks for sharing. Beautiful pictures too!
    Beloo Mehra recently posted… An Extraordinary MomentMy Profile

  • wendy June 27, 2014

    I’m a city girl, I like being in the middle of things, but I also want the ocean in front of me and the mountains behind me, so Vancouver and Victoria (like my sister points out above!) are the places for me.
    wendy recently posted… Illicit trashy adventuresMy Profile

  • Archana
    June 27, 2014

    My place is wherever I feel comfortable. Mostly it happens with comfort zones like known places and homes. Yet to fly far alone, would rather prefer the branches of the tree rather than the unknown jungle…
    Archana recently posted… Sampoorn Santhe – 2014My Profile

  • Vinodini Iyer
    June 27, 2014

    You’ve been lucky to have lived by water side all along. I get drawn to water bodies too…but alas have been lucky to be around the ocean or river only on a rare holiday.
    Your aqua-affinity comes out beautifully in this post.
    Vinodini Iyer recently posted… The Models who Rolled me into what I AmMy Profile

  • Suzanne Fluhr
    June 27, 2014

    I forget who wisely said, “Wherever you go, there you are.” Since we are destined to be our own travel companions—no matter who or what else is around, I’ve found it important to make sure I’m OK with myself wherever I am. Having said that, the beauty of nature is restorative for me.
    Suzanne Fluhr recently posted… A Boomeresque Book Review: Chocolatour – A Quest for the World’s Best Chocolate (Volume One) by Doreen PendgracsMy Profile

  • Cheryl Jones June 27, 2014

    I tell people that I live in the best place in the world, and I truly believe that. Even though we have wicked Winters and it’s hot and muggy in the Summer and even with all the mosquitos this time of year, I love it here.
    I understand your being drawn to water because I am too. I didn’t grow up near it and the closest water to me now is the river (20 minute drive away) but I think that draw is something a lot of people feel. It must be in our nature.
    With all that, I love to travel too but I also love to come back home. I’ve often said to Reggie that if we didn’t live here, I’d love to live in Victoria. I fell in love with that city the first time we visited and it’s only got better with time.

    • Laurel Regan
      June 27, 2014

      One of these days I want to visit your part of Canada – I’ve always wanted to see it! Glad you live in a place that you love and call home. 🙂
      Laurel Regan recently posted… Photo Friday: GreenMy Profile

  • ElaineLK June 27, 2014

    Although I live in the “Ocean State,” I’ve always preferred rivers and lakes to that huge, wide expanse of water that you can’t see across–probably my mild agoraphobia. We are lucky in Providence to have waterfront on Narragansett Bay, as well as rivers flowing through downtown. As I consider myself a city person, I’m grateful that so many great cities were built on rivers.

  • Life Breath Present June 27, 2014

    I love this, I am free to let the me I already am drink in their beauty, learn from their force, grow by appreciating their depth.

    “My place” is wherever I want it to be.”

    Not a more perfect way to say it. Not a more perfect way to live it either! 🙂
    Life Breath Present recently posted… Bloggers Wanted! Back to School Tech-Style Event GiveawayMy Profile

  • Kathy Combs June 27, 2014

    It reminds me of the few times that I have moved in my life…how much I dreaded leaving my home only to discover that “home” became wherever my heart resides. Lovely post Lauren! ♥
    Kathy Combs recently posted… It’s a Hit!My Profile

  • sitara nair June 28, 2014

    It was lovely reading…
    You brought back memories of beaches….
    My place is where my loved ones are..
    sitara nair recently posted… The pictures that speak my heart…….My Profile


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