The Healing Power of Nature
March 30, 2020
During these days of social distancing, remote learning, working from home and social isolation, we are all feeling the effects of COVID-19. We want to send a very special message to everyone in our Candlelight Ranch Family that now, more than ever, is the best time to keep our mental and physical health as a top priority. During this time of uncertainty, it might seem difficult to remember but nature is a beautiful constant in all our lives. When we look outside Spring is at its fullest; birds sing sweet songs, butterflies visit fresh blooming flowers, trees burst with new growth and the sun shines with a warm and welcoming touch to the earth. We can take solace in knowing that even in these times of uncertainty nature offers reprieve, joy and peace to our minds.
No matter where you are, an oasis of natural space is right around the corner, our out your front door. Here are a few suggestions; open home windows, take a walk around your neighborhood, hike in local green spaces, admire spring wildflowers or sit under the shade of a tree. Any action of connecting to nature can lift our spirits and bring us closer to our natural world, each other and our own inner peace.
In the coming weeks we may find we have a bit more time on our hands or that we need more opportunities to keep our children engaged, getting outside for a walk or exploring new places might be a great answer to this need. Many Texas State Parks and National Wildlife Refuge remain open with a few adjustments. HERE you can find an up to date list of open Texas State Parks. In addition, the trails of our partner, Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge located just north of Austin on Hwy 1431, remains open. Visit their website HERE for more details on trails and location. The Highland Lakes area has also seen a new addition to hiking opportunities at Reveille Peek Ranch in Burnet, Co. Find more information regarding this HERE.
If you are looking for more homebased nature engagement try these: Hang a bird feeder to attract feathered friends, plant your summer garden or take time to care for a few potted plants. These simple ways enable us to connect with nature in our own spaces. We believe the action and responsibility of caring for living things instils purpose, productivity and reward to our daily lives and gives us something beautiful to look forward to each day. If you are up to it, a simple drive to tour the Bluebonnets or a stroll with our loved ones to capture some sunny rays can go a long way in the healing of and healthy upkeep of our minds and bodies. No matter where we go or what changes we experience, nature will always hold a special and safe place for us all.
Below are a few resources about how you can talk to your children about Covid-19.
- “Talking to Children About COVID-19: A Parent Resource” from the National Association of School Psychologists
- “How to Talk toYour Kids About Coronavirus” from PBS Kids
- “Outbreak Fact Sheet: Parent/Caregiver Guide to Helping Families Cope with the Coronavirus Disease COVID-19” from the National Child Traumatic Stress Network
- “Talking to Kids about the Coronavirus” (also offered in Spanish) from Child Mind Institute
We care deeply about the mental health of our community. If you or someone you know needs help please reach out and ask.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255 (TALK)
National Youth Crisis Hotline: 1-800-442-4673 (HOPE)
Text Lines for Teens or Parents:
Crisis Text Line: Text “SHARE” to 741741
Your Life Your Voice: 1-800-448-3000 (Text “VOICE” to 20121 seven days a week from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m.)