Parish Nurse Health Tips for April 2, 2017

Parish Nurse Health Tips 04-02-17

For I am like a tree whose roots reach the water,

whose branches are refreshed with the dew.

Job 29:19 (nlt)

There is such pleasure in the spring season as we begin to see plants coming back to life, and as Christians we are being given a beautiful reminder of Easter and the resurrection of Christ.

The season also holds healthy feelings and emotions out for us to experience.

As I walked with someone through the hallway entrance of a hospital recently, I was moved by the many ways the décor and design created a plethora of senses.  A waterfall gave a calmness to the nervousness the person with me was feeling.  We stopped for a minute in front of some beautiful art displayed in paintings and sculpture, and her comment was, “I feel better already, and I am not even with the doctor.”

When you are stressed, do you find nature is helpful to you in reducing that stress?  Walking on the beach, hiking an easy trail in a wooded park or campground, going for a drive to see the spring flower displays in our northern bulb farms, experiencing the soothing scents of lavender at the farmers market booths, you can see stress relief before your very eyes!

Many businesses as well as parks and other recreational areas are seeing the benefit of nature to reduce stress in our lives.  I really enjoy ending a day of stressful encounters just sitting on a park bench overlooking the water watching the gulls, ferry and other boat traffic and a beautiful sunset on a clear day.  The brief respite this creates immediately decreases stress levels, lowers the blood pressure, and begins to ease the pain of the life experiences we have or have seen others experience.  Even something as simple as spending a few minutes in your yard or living surroundings at a park or nursery or other display of nature can benefit you in your ability to re-focus on the beauty of God’s creation and strength you can find in it.

Job struggled through his life, but he was able to gain an understanding and strength from God to endure all that he experienced in his struggles, and we can do likewise.

I pray that each of you take a few moments to look around you as you walk your daily journey, and stop to pray a pray of thanks for all our Lord and Savior has given to us in His death and resurrection.

Cynthia Rutan, RN, Parish Nurse at Peace Lutheran Church and School