My Home, My Savior, My Heart
Danielle Hewitt, Division 2, 10th grade #ws17e-s3d2

Nature saved my life. When I was in a very low place, and when technology, school, and the constant stresses of everyday life threatened to drown me, nature was my safe haven. It became my quiet space and my safe space. All of my stress seemed to melt away whenever I quieted my mind in nature’s sanctuary. Nature is and always will be my second home, my savior, and where my heart lies.

Nature is my second home because of how it sheltered me in a time of need. Last year, I had signed up for more things than I could handle. AP classes, drama club, sports, and taking care of my health issues all demanded too much of my time. It soon got to the point where I never had a free minute, which resulted in many breakdowns and tears shed. One day, I longingly looked outside into my backyard where tall trees grew with luscious green leaves bolstered by a thick and climbable trunk. I could almost hear the bright green grass and vibrant flowers calling my name. I decided to turn off my iPad and put down my homework for just a minute to sneak outside and take a breath of the glorious fresh air I knew my body had been lacking for so long. As soon as I stepped outside and heard the beautiful sounds of chirping birds, I instantly felt better. Grass tickled my feet as fluffy white clouds floated tranquilly past me and a warm breeze hugged my body. I instantly felt like I was home, even though I had just left my physical house. My beautiful green backyard felt like my mental and emotional home. It felt as though time had stopped, and for a moment, my breath was taken away. Never in my life have I felt so safe and secure then when experiencing Mother Nature’s loving embrace.

Next, nature is my savior. Last year, along with too many stressful situations, I also experienced some major health issues that threatened to take over and control my life. I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism; adrenal fatigue; sinusitis; and CVID, an immune system disorder which meant that my immune system was shutting down and would soon be unable to function. At the time, I didn't know what most of these conditions were, and having them at such a young age put a heavy weight on my shoulders. Hopelessness began to creep into my mind like a dark storm cloud. The doctors wanted me to come in for weekly infusions to try to salvage the last of my working immune system. However, after a lot of thinking and research, I decided that instead of succumbing to my diseases and disorders, I would fight them. My weapon of choice: the organic fruits and vegetables given to me by nature. I stopped eating anything that didn't come straight from the ground, so I soon eliminated all chemicals and processed foods from my diet. After only a few weeks of only eating fruits and vegetables, I could feel my body healing. In a little over a year, all of my diseases had reversed, my immune system began functioning properly again, and I had more energy than ever before. Not only did nature’s healing powers save my body, but it also saved my mind. Veganism brought me closer to the beautiful animals that I once consumed. It taught me compassion and love for all creatures. Consuming only things that come straight from the ground started off as a survival mechanism, but it’s now a lifestyle that makes me happy and brings me closer to nature every day. Nature is my savior because it nurtured my body and healed it.

Finally, nature is where my heart lies. After I discovered nature’s healing powers and tranquil effects, I started meditating outside. Quieting my mind in nature helped to open up my soul. I’ve had many epiphanies while sitting outside, including making the decision to transfer schools, deciding what clubs and sports to do, and choosing classes for school. Whenever I feel indecisive or uneasy about something, I always meditate in nature, and it always helps to calm me down so that I can make a rational and healthful decision. When I breathe nature’s fresh air, my lungs feel full, and my heart feels happy. Also, I enjoy doing yoga and going for jogs outside. Fresh air and exercise are an amazing combination that have tremendously helped my body and mind to become healthier. Through meditation, yoga, and exercising outside, nature has helped me to find myself and discover who I truly am and what I want out of life.

In conclusion, nature saved my life. It allowed me to reduce my stress, heal, and open myself to love and endless possibilities. The green grass brightens my day, and the beautiful sun warms my body and soul. Nature is and always will be my second home, my savior, and where my heart lies. When in doubt, nature is the answer!
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