My women's book club recently read and discussed Anne Morrow Lindbergh's Gift from the Sea together with the historical fiction book about her life with Charles Lindbergh, The Aviator's Wife by Melanie Benjamin.
We agreed that reading about Anne Morrow Lindbergh's life helped us understand and even more deeply appreciate her wise words, which have inspired women for several decades already. In Gift from the Sea, Lindbergh uses seashells as inspiration. She gathered shells during a time of solitude spent in a cottage at the sea—a time when she was able to gather her thoughts and sift through her life experiences to distill the wisdom contained in them.
One of the shells, a moon shell, reminded her that she needed quiet time alone, time for reflection and contemplation. She describes the shell: "On its smooth symmetrical face is pencilled with precision a perfect spiral, winding inward to the pinpoint center of the shell, the tiny dark core of the apex, the pupil of the eye." She uses that shell to talk about connecting with our core—and about the importance of finding solitude in order to do so. She was able to connect with hers in that time of being alone at the sea. But the challenge, she noted, is to carry that attitude back to a busy life. "I cannot live forever on my island," she said, speaking of the moon shell. "But I can take you back to my desk in Connecticut.... You will remind me that I must try to be alone for part of each year, even a week or a few days, and for part of each day, even for an hour or a few minutes in order to keep my core, my center, my island-quality."
That's always the challenge, isn't it? To live a centered, balanced life amid the chaos and busyness—not just apart from it. How's your connection to your center?