i have always been a night owl. i feel the most beautiful and alive sauntering my way through the shadows. night is when most of my best memories are and when i think back on living there's always a bright moon set in the sky and tires burning on pavement to the unknown.
but theres something sacred about morning. something beautiful.
this past weekend i went camping with a group of my friends just an hour up the road to get out all summer fun before school started monday. the plan was to go to a campsite, set up, swim, cook, and have a blast. well.....if any of you have guy friends in their early twenties you will know that none of them follow directions ESPECIALLY from a girl. i have a great sense of direction, got it from my dad, and i know right where our campsite was. although, we never got a chance to see it. we ended up turning off a dirt road and drove down it a few miles and stopped. yep. this is our spot. right smack dab in the middle of no where. no camp grounds. no water. no bathrooms. no people. while my internal girl was screaming NO WAY i didn't want to be that girl and decided this will have to do. after tents were upright, uno was in full swing, and my legs were already caked in dirt i decided it wasn't going to be an awful adventure.
the rest of the few days were fun. we built a huge bonfire, made homemade hamburgers and french fries, had duct tape and wood chair making contests, boys wrestled, and many laughs were had. i ended up getting horribly sick the night of the second day and had to go home early on the last day. but the time that was the best for me and that i will always remember was that first morning.
i crawled out of the tent achy with my shorts, sweatshirt, and dirty shoes on expecting everyone to be alive and in swing. but no one was awake. i walked around the campsite and was taken aback at how serene everything was outside. how could i have not noticed how beautiful this all was yesterday? i sat by the smoldering fire and the smell was unbelievably intoxicating. the sun hadn't quite risen and it was still an eerie dark outside. i felt like i shouldn't be sitting, not with all this beauty around me. so i got up and started walking. i walked down the dirt road that had brought us to our little secluded spot. i walked over rocks, fallen trees, and animal prints in the dirt. i walked til i got a little scared and then turned around and walked back. before i headed down the trail that led back to our campsite i stopped and closed my eyes. and breathed. everything was still. even the trees took their whooshing and howling to a whisper and in that moment i felt...life. it pumped through my blood like poison. it infected every ounce of my body and all at once i lifted my hands up and smiled. "thank You" is all i could whisper through my face filled smile. this is exactly what i needed. i needed to feel something. i needed to feel alive again. loved again. special yet insignificant again. and i felt all those things at once. i never wanted to leave that moment. i felt like He was standing with me and smiling along at the beauty He created. i felt like He was saying, "look at all this beauty I have made for you. look at all the beauty I have made in your life. look at how much beauty I made in you." with dirty black bottomed feet and greasy hair i know that i was beautiful. at least in that moment. with my arms stretched to the tips of the trees and my head lifted in adoration of my Father. i was beautiful. because He made me just like He made the gorgeous pines and sunrises.