Going on walks with my daughters is one of the quickest ways I come back to myself. They bolt out of the door with mismatched socks, or a scarf that has been saftey-pinned into a caplet, ready to meet the world half way, whereas I emerge from the house carrying all of my 'to-do's' and 'remember-not-to-forget's' buzzing around me in a nearly palpable swarm. With this one action, going from inside to out, I am released from the shoulds and coulds of the day, and my senses remind me of the 'me' that patiently waits below that 'surface me' that performs her 'ballet of productivity' for the majority of my waking hours. I slowly remember that I am a human being and not a human doing.
I allow myself to witness and to watch and find myself in awe of Gillian, nearly 7 now, who always spots the tiniest flower or the smallest sliver of the lizard's tail. She is one of my best teachers. Her way of moving through the world is one of offense not defense. She isn't recovering from a long week, or a long few years. She is exploring, open and curious. She moves intuitively, stopping abruptly to get a better look at a mushroom pushing through dirt, or running for bursts of 30 strides for no reason at all (and isn't that the best reason sometimes)? She cries loudly at the same scrape I might not even have noticed for a day or two had it happened on my own person. She readily asks for comfort, and I delight in her asking and my ability to provide her with a touch. In these moments, we are both healers. She reminds me to bear-hug what is around me, to be in love with the world and its miracles. I remind her she is safe, she is loved, she is a miracle.
I don't take for granted what I do. My job, as I see it, is to hopefully do for you what my daughters do for me... to pluck beauty from the world around us, to filter it through my own eyes, and to reflect it back to you so that you can be reminded of the beauty around us and your own connectedness to it. We are all connected.