As 2017 winds down to a close, and as we all join our families to celebrate a season of togetherness, joy, and appreciation, we can’t help but appreciate the countless gifts our ocean offers us each and every day. Recently, we came across an adorable and quite seasonally-appropriate holiday: National Thank You Note Day. I started to think about what I’m personally most thankful for this year. And the one thing that kept coming back to my mind?
Sure, it seems pretty obvious that people who work for an ocean conservation group would clearly love and adore the sea beyond words. But, as I continued reflecting, I wondered: how often do we truly take the time to mindfully appreciate all our ocean gives us on a regular basis? From promoting relaxation and positive, calming vibes, to providing millions of people with a reliable food source, to the air we breathe and the water we drink, the sea provides both our bodies and minds with innumerable things that our lives would never be the same without.
So this year, we’re ready to acknowledge those gifts, and thank our ocean for so many things…
- Thank you for your ability to inspire, and for instilling in us a sense of wonder and curiosity that’s beyond what we can put into words. Close to 95% of our ocean remains unexplored by mankind. I don’t know about you, but it seems to me that a statistic like that certainly leaves a renewed sense of wonder and curiosity about our great blue planet.
- Thank you for providing our world with food…if only we show it the respect and treatment it deserves. From fish to oysters to mussels and more, countless coastal communities and indigenous groups rely on healthy oceans for both steady dietary provisions and stable local economies. Without our seas, these communities truly would never be the same. Countless cultures center their livelihood and communities around the sea, making our ocean the foundation of cultures around the world.
- Thank you for seeing us all as equals—for being being pure-heartedly and gracefully free from the superficial assumptions. Whether sourced from our biases on race, gender, religion, abilities, or otherwise, you show us that the sea is welcoming and willing to show its beauty to all who wish to see and appreciate it, no matter who they are or where they come from.
- Thank you for bringing communities together with a united cause for a greater good. Across our country and the globe, thousands have come together each year to participate in the International Coastal Cleanup. Even after some of the most catastrophic natural disasters, cleanup efforts have brought people together and illustrated the tie that binds us: a love for each other, and a love for our ocean.
Thank you, thank you, thank you…for being beautiful, educational, calming, and awe-inspiring, all at once. Without the influence of our ocean on how so many of us view the world (with a sense of wonder, humility, and limitless curiosity), we would never be the same. So again…
To our ocean, thank you.
While this year has brought quite the number of obstacles and difficulties to those trying to protect you, rest assured, we won’t give up on you.
We see you, and we’re fighting for you. No matter what happens, we’re excited for the start of 2018, symbolizing a fresh start and renewed energy for our work to protect and preserve you.