If it’s no secret of my love for Cades Cove and Gatlinburg then it should also come as no surprise that I adore the closeness and majesty of Tellico Plains….although I admit I’ve never understood the “Plains” part of the name due to I see nothing but mountains and hills and valleys…no flat plains! LOL! It was the day after I conducted my Grandmother’s “Celebration of Life” service that I was just beat down in every way a person can be beaten down! Physically, Emotionally, and Spiritually I.was.drained! I had nothing left to give…to anyone. I’m not a person who likes to cry. It takes A LOT to make me cry…and especially in front of people…because I am NOT a “pretty crier”! Not.at.all!
I’m not a person who likes pity or asking for help for that matter. I’d rather struggle to do it myself than ask for help…so if I ask for help you know something’s up! I know I’ve been given “gifts”, also my “curses” in some ways, that make me physically stronger than a lot of men, and emotionally, and I like to think Spiritually, stronger than most women. I was raised to be self-sufficient, and “if you want it done right do it yourself”; hence why I think 17-19 hour work days are “normal”…I must give my client’s the very best…no matter the cost! I will say this though; if you just offer to help and don’t ask me if you can help, I’ll more than likely gladly take you up on it…just sayin! 😉 Mainly though my nature is to make everyone around me feel better. I exist to make other’s happy, help out, realize their beauty, blessings, and lend an ear or advice or a hug…whatever they need. I’m not always on top of my game, but bottom line; if those around me are happy then I am happy…(with a few exceptions of course 😉 I’m not a saint after all! Hahaha!) I’ve been warned, told I need to stop, even threatened (with love of course) that I need to put MY needs first now and then. Hey, if I did that more the Dr.’s from my 1st of October hospitalization said I probably wouldn’t have had such a severe gall bladder attack. More about that whole ordeal another day though! Back to the blog at hand.
Given everything I’d been through from the 23rd of September until the Sunday I took this “Me-mini-cation” the 30th of October. I shot up out of bed at 3:00pm with sunset quickly approaching and decided I was going to have “Church” in the mountains. I prayed I’d make it to witness the sunset, that something inside told me I shouldn’t miss, as it’s about an hour from my house to Tellico. I stopped to get gas and I was off….alone. I’ve never been afraid to go places by myself. I have amazing “gut” feelings and it sounds strange to others but simply put God tells me if it’s ok or if I should stay away. This day I felt I’d be being disobedient if I didn’t go. This of course freaks mother out as she’s terrified of me alone in the mountains. But hey, I’m writing this blog now aren’t I? 😉 HA!
I drove as fast as I could (legally 😉 to get there and when I turned off on to the road to Bald River Falls I had a feeling I was hitting the mountains right when God wanted me to. The sun lit through the trees and made the leaves simply GLOW! It was rather deserted that day/time so stopping right on my side of the road wasn’t a problem to grab a few quick shots and roll on. I cruised and shot all the way up past the falls a few miles and decided it was time to turn around and head for the overlook on the Cherohala Skyway for sunset. I stopped a few more times and made it to the overlook in perfect time! I’d missed the sun going down but that after sun sunset is my favorite part any way. This day it was sheerly magnificent complete with a perfect crescent-shaped moon and clouds strewn about so that I thought for a moment I was witnessing the Northern Lights here in Tennessee AGAIN!
Throughout the whole drive I cried and prayed. Prayed for strength, healing physically and emotionally, and for peace. No one ever said being a Christian was easy, if anything it’s harder to be a Christian than not be one in today’s time, but during grief and trials it’s then that I think it’s hardest to see the rainbow on the other side for the storm clouds, wind and rain beating down. It’s a choice to see the good coming whenever it may, and to believe that He’s going to deliver you through, and that you’ll be better for it when all is said and done. That’s what was spoken to my heart that day as I absorbed the spectacular beauty before me, and used this gift I have been given, both as a profession with people and as a hobby with landscapes and nature.
I hope you enjoy the fruits of my journey and in some way go away blessed too from these images. I do not exist for me, but for He who breathed life in to me. If you’ve loved these then feel free to check out Part 1 of my “Fall-la-la-la-la 2011” Series of Cades Cove and Gatlinburg by clicking here.
As always PLEASE feel free to browse my images and SHARE them via the links below, but do NOT steal, cut, crop, save, or otherwise rip off my works of HEART. You can purchase them via digital copies, prints, canvas, etc… but please don’t steal them! Thank you!