Are you in your element?

I love water. I love to be by it, on it and in it. Perhaps it’s a genetic predisposition but I find my soul just resonates in the presence of water. It can be smooth as glass, white capped, whipped by wind or tidal waves, large and small with their regular rhythm resonating along a shoreline. I love water’s many presentations and how it interacts with the ever changing light.

I am a swimmer. After over a year of not swimming I am gratefully fully vaccinated and have found a local pool where I can book a lane for lap swimming. So, I am thrilled to be back in the water.  It’s a saltwater pool and I have been going early at the beginning of each new day. 


I love the interchange between air and water as I move the earth and fire of my body through these precious elements. St Catherine of Siena said, “As the fish is in the water and the water is in the fish, so I am in God and God is in me.”  What a wonderful metaphor for the experience of being enfolded, submerged in the reality of God’s loving presence.


We all spent nine months in the salt waters of the womb. What is your element?


Isabel Rafferty OP

Madison, WI