Have you ever seen anything so beautiful that it just took your breath away? I'm an early riser naturally but was awakened even earlier when my youngest crawled in to snuggle with me long before it was light out. Unable to fall back asleep I made a cup of coffee and went into the living room to admire the tree and all of Santa's hard work. My house sits atop a big hill and I have the most amazing views of the sun as it rises. This morning a bright orange horizontal flare shone brightly against the black sky. I tossed on a dress and some flip flops, poured my coffee into a travel cup and headed out down to the water where I was witness to perhaps the most gorgeous sunrise I have ever seen. It was the first time, I think, my breath has ever been taken away.
I'm not a religious person but I suppose, as I get older, I do get more spiritual. While I've always been one to slow down, stop and smell the roses - more by curiosity and from an artist's eye than any other reason, I suppose. I've never been one to take the beauty that surrounds us for granted, but I do think I have come to appreciate it more as I've gotten older. Some say that sun rises and sun sets are religious experiences. To see the sun slowly rise behind Trinity Episcopal Church was as close to a religious experience I have ever come to. (Pictured above) Each day, they say, is a gift and yesterday I was witness to this amazing gift. It's one thing to watch the sun rise from inside, it's another thing altogether to see it up close and personal. For many this is not feasible, at least on a regular basis. But I urge you all to make an effort to go watch the sun rise from time to time.
I am fortunate enough that my kids all sleep in a bit on Christmas morning and I was able to get out for about a half hour or so. That half hour completely shaped my day. As I stood on beach and stared into the bright citrus sky as the sky started its ascent above the water off in the horizon I became mesmerized by the beauty and brightness in front of me. How this happens every single day seemed absolutely miraculous. I stood, at that moment, on that particularly warm day in awe of all around me and completely grateful. Christmas is always bittersweet. I am reminded of what I have, what I don't have and what I had and lost. As any divorced parent it's easy to get lost in the sadness that the day can bring instead of reveling in the joy and happiness no matter how short it is. As the children grow the day loses a bit of the magic it once had. I wish I could bottle it up and make it last forever. But I can't. Our Christmas isn't as it was, for we, like so many, are a household divided - I refuse to say broken for broken we are not. We are just different from what we used to be.
Instead of feeling sad that I would only have a few short hours to enjoy my children, I realized as the sun slowly rose, that those few precious hours were as much as a gift as the day dawning before me. From bright to pastel the hues on the horizon turned as the sun made her way up in the sky. And when all around me was bright and illuminated I headed home to my children and all the beautifully wrapped packages beneath the tree.
Weather permitting, I think this is how I would like to begin my New Year...
I don't really believe in New Year's resolutions but I do believe in creating new goals for myself and I do vow to use my camera more and my phone less.... The quality, while good, cannot compare to a camera. I hope you enjoy the beauty and the magic of my Christmas Morning Sunrise despite this and that you too are inspired to get up early and watch the start of a brand new day while most are still fast asleep.