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Living the Change

As I raise my glass at sunset and close out another day, I gaze out at the white layer of late winter snow and admire my Sanctuary view that has the wind wrestling through the bare branches. Spring arrived this week with cool temperatures and a string of welcome sunny days and blue skies. I went for a short walk in the gushy grass earlier this week with the intent to remove the debris that inevitably settles into the woods during the winter. As I headed toward a discarded fast food wrapper, I heard a sound nearby. A mallard duck couple was swimming in a giant puddle. She seemed to be distressed by my presence; he wasn’t. I stood still and observed them. He swam around her a few times, getting closer each turn until he parked himself directly next to her, settling into protective stance. She became visibly calmer. Deciding that the garbage could wait, I smiled and slowly walked away.

Now, as the sun lowers to illuminate another part of the world, I’m suddenly aware of an urgent message (nudge from my spirit guide) that, like the mallards, we all need to take care of one another. Stop the badmouthing and spreading of the negative news reports and stories of how we are victimized and get on with loving and laughter and forgiving one another. “You must be the change you wish to see in the world,” Gandhi said. I am ready.

A fistfight erupted between two people in the hallway outside my office last week. As security managed the confrontation, curious spectators gathered. The sounds of angry screaming pierced the air and my ears, causing sadness in my heart. I did not hold it there. I wished them peace and moved on and did my best not to involve myself in the conversations that revolved around the incident for the remainder of the day. From there it was home to the radio’s gloom and doom news and commercials. More anger, victims, blame, protect my rights, lawsuits, greed…Turn it off, Mary, and Focus.

My heart and mind deliberately return to the previous weekend and St. Patrick’s Day spent with close friends celebrating their daughter’s second birthday. A house stuffed with generations of people and overflowing with celebration. Balloons, favors, candy, glitter, frosted popcorn, party dresses, all decorated with smiles. Gift opening had the guest of honor in the middle of the floor in a chaotic pile of ribbons, tissue paper and joy clutching her new Mr. Potato Head and responding to the onslaught of paparazzi with, “Cheese!” as they called her name for pictures. You could barely hear, there was so much glee. The evening ended with the announcement that it was time for a “memory” photo. This was the family’s tradition of capturing everyone together in a picture. We all did our best to squish into the shot; pets and all. The end result was fantastic…we looked like a random pile of humans that had cascaded out of a cornucopia filled with love. Four and a half hours of sheer delight creating a lifetime memory.   My digital version is being converted now to print for display in the Sanctuary gallery.

To notice and write about such wonderful things and share them with readers is the change I can be in the world. The ability to shift gears and attune myself to the beauty and love that exists on this Earth is a brainwashing skill I have consciously acquired to move beyond the negative into perpetual happiness using kind and joyful words, human and nature connections. To share this with others by building a Sanctuary is another. While I’m thinking about this, a squirrel scales the picket fence as I watch, and acrobatically leaps over and upward onto a nearby pine branch. I hope you saw that through my mind’s eye.

As I bid Goodnight to you all and another perfect day, I whisper to myself, “Be the change, Mary, live and share the change. Take care of everyone you encounter.” Both I, and my spirit guide are pleased.

capture life writing


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