The nature of the Pacific Northwest enchants me. With its thick forests, snowy mountains, and shimmering lakes, it’s hard for one not to visit and feel like they are part of something bigger and that’s exactly how I felt when I visited Mount Rainier National Park.
About an hour and a half outside of Seattle, my friend and I felt like the city disappeared behind us as we drove into the park. And once inside, we felt like we were in a different world, like the forest in Hansel and Gretel, except our breadcrumbs were our phones.
As we hiked, I couldn’t help but feel a bit intimidated by the surrounding beauty. The park was so pristine that I felt like I didn’t belong there and I worried about messing it up just by standing there. But about twenty minutes in, my worries faded and my walk began to feel more like a meditation.
Mount Rainier is also the most glaciated peak in the Pacific Northwest so even though it was already July, there was still snow left on the ground. Some were in the middle of our paths so we had to carefully tiptoe around it or climb over it slowly. Originally, I also wanted to see the Mount Rainier wildflower field but the park ranger told us we were just a tad too early.
In the end, my friend and I decided to hike up a trail named “Paradise Point”, a name we found quite fitting to the views that it served. Along the way, we saw different types of fir trees, pine trees, and a beautiful lake so reflective we could’ve sworn it was a mirror.
And while I was staring out at the lake I couldn’t help but think, “THIS and I were created by the same hands?” If so, then why am I not able to look at myself the same way? Why am I not able to look at myself in awe? Were we not created the same way, with atoms and molecules bonded together by the same force?
“Why are most of us incapable of looking at ourselves the same way we look at nature?”
But maybe this is the reason why so many of us are drawn to nature? Because it reminds us of our own grandeur and to accept our own beauty despite our imperfections? It’s a selfish and egotistical way of looking at it but if we can’t look at ourselves that way, then who will?