July 5, 2014

I Have a Romantic Love With Nature. ~ Nikki Noce, MD


“Why are we leaving?” I shouted to my friends as I reluctantly made my way to the van.

“The movie is still playing you know? Look at the pink in the sky. Look at how amazing this is!”

I couldn’t understand why we were leaving Experimental Beach, one of the best spots to watch the sunset on the white island of Ibiza. The light of the sun serenaded the clouds, creating one the most spectacular aesthetic masterpieces I had ever seen. I leaned out the window and gazed at the display. I didn’t want to leave. I wanted revel in the moment—in the beauty of the sky.

“Nikki, I think it’s time for you to make some moves,” said my friend. “You get lost in the sea, you get lost in the sand, you get lost in the sky. It’s time for you to leave New York.”

And I began to cry.

Earlier that day in Formentera, I dove off the boat and swam my way to a tiny remote island off the coast. Slithering my way onto the hot white sand and relishing the heat against my bare skin, I began to bury myself. Rolling over onto my stomach, I cuddled up some sand, rested my cheek down and gazed out at the sparkling sea.


I opened my eyes to see my friend making his way out of the water. Whoops! I had fallen asleep. He smiled at me and I laughed. I stood up, covered in sand, and made my way over to him sliding my gritty arm around his waist as we walked back into the sea.

He was right. When I’m in nature, I’m in my element.

There is a flame that ignites in my being and I feel most alive when I’m one with the earth.

I have a romantic love with nature—an infinite, passionate, fulfilling kind of love with her.

She feeds my soul.

She makes me better.

Yesterday I was at a concert in Prospect Park and while everyone was standing, I decided to lie down on the blanket and stare up into the sky. As I looked up into the trees and then up into the sky to find the one twinkling star, Venus, I could really feel the music.

Every sunrise and sunset you can find me wandering off into the distance. Without even thinking about it I begin my energy practices of yoga, qigong, and meditation. I don’t even realize what I’m doing until it’s happening—it just pours out of me.

When I’m in nature, the volume of life crescendos.

And as for the sun—there’s something about that hot, curvy body in the sky. A force of nature—the sun is the energy source for all living beings. She is the ultimate provider—all-giving without expecting anything in return. Burning brightly in the sky, she is the heart of our galaxy.

The moments I gaze into her majesty are always the moments I find most clarity and feel a boundless, infinite love. She burns away the worry and the fear. Her warming rays engulf me, providing me with comfort and warmth, reminding me of my purpose and passion. She inspires me. Oh, how she inspired me. And every morning, to begin my yoga practice, I face her and salute her.

This morning I awoke with a gasp to the stifling summer heat in the air. I rolled over and saw it was 4:30 a.m. A smile spread across my face because I knew the sun had yet to begin her ascent. I grabbed a sweater and climbed the winding staircase to the rooftop. A warm breeze kissed my legs as I stepped out onto the terrace.

There, dazzling in front of me was the Manhattan skyline—a concrete jungle full of dreams and chaos.

“Oh the love/hate relationship I have with this city,” I thought for a moment, and then the sun began to rise, the pink lights in the sky stealing all of my attention.

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Apprentice Editor: Kim Haas / Editor: Renée Picard

Photo: Courtesy of author


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Nikki Noce, MD