Today it is sunny, a balmy midwest breeze tumbling the decaying remnants of autumn's fling across salt dusted roads and sidewalks. As I Moose and I take our morning constitutional, I am almost lulled into believing Spring is around the corner. The robins being particularly chatty this morning and the earth under my hands feels spongy, awake and alive.
This is my practice. To every day take time to place my hands upon the ground, feeling the energy of Mother Earth pulsating under receptive palms, giving thanks for the gift of my life, my place in this magnificent web of existence. As I breath in deeply, I realize healing flows in two directions: the surge of energy I receive in turn asks for my loving touch, prayers for health and balance and strength to flow back to our planet as she is in desperate need of our nurturance and care.
I savor this day because I know tomorrow things will boomarang back to Winter. Snow, slush, biting winds and dark skies. I welcome it as we need the moisture and I am not quite ready to leave the slow pace and inward focus that Winter fosters within me. As I walk through my neighborhood, I enjoy the opportunity to see the bounty of birds nests from last year. Winter's bareness affords me the chance to witness treasures hidden the rest of the year.
I want to take time to celebrate the many hidden joys in my life right now. The crowds of finches, juncos, sparrows, and cardinals who congregate daily at my feeders and then gather in the bushes outside my dining room window, seeking shelter from the wind and snow. The hours of my day are announced by the repeated return of downy woodpecker to the suet feeder. (I hear his chirp chirp and run to the window to receive his greeting.)
And more recently, I have been blessed by a pair of hawks who may be house hunting, a tree in the neighboring field offering a commanding view of the area and its many rabbit dwellings. Hawk has been a faithful guide and guardian to me for over a decade now. I found my first hawk feather at the end of a pivotal yoga training program and hawk continues to shower me with a multitude of gifts and insights along with feathers. (note: it is illegal in the United States to possess raptor feathers including hawk without proper permits from state and federal agencies and in no way am I advocating or suggesting holding onto these treasures. It is enough to be gifted their presence on my path.)
Hawk seems to have claimed Cowgirl as well and we share in the delight of spying a hawk soaring overhead or perched in a tree or light pole. Cowgirl has a special affinity with the feathered ones; turkey, hummingbird, owl, eagle, penguin are her companions in soft plush forms and also in Nature. I recently shared with her that she has many powerful guides and guardians and when she is scared or having a rough time she can call upon them and they will be by her side in support, giving her energy and guidance. This has resulted in her dragon (Blaze Thunderbolt) helping out on a few spelling tests! But it also has brought about a subtle but discernible shift in her self confidence and manner in which she carries herself.
Recognizing and celebrating my connection with Nature and understanding myself as a piece of that whole has brought about my own sense of empowerment and ability. It is this gift I want to honor daily, returning the favor - gifting back the energy and love so freely given to me - making each day Mother's Day and an opportunity to celebrate and give thanks.