I went for a walk in the woods this morning. It had rained heavily on Sunday evening so the unpaved paths were still a bit soggy. That prompted me to remove my shoes (bare feet are much easier to wash) which also made me walk slower, feel more grounded and pay closer attention to what was around me.
The path winds through beautiful stands of ferns with other woodland plants adding their special touch. The trees are thick, creating a heavy shade. There is a fork in the little path and I was guided to take the one leading uphill to a local church then back down into the woods again. I was told to pay attention. The leaves underfoot provided a soft surface to walk on *ouch* except for the dry holly leaves with their prickles. The trick is to roll your foot from heel to toe and step >eek< firmly – OW! Yeah, right…. *whew* back to soft oak leaves. Ok, so was that today’s lesson? But wait, there’s more! A beautiful damselfly with black wings tipped with crescents of white and with a black iridescent body stopped on a leaf of a shrub a foot to the right of me. She had a little bitty fly in her mouth with the wings sticking out. She sat there contentedly munching while I stood happily watching. I tuned in to see if I could get a message – ah, now there’s a problem. Did I ask or did I just expect? There’s a definite lack of respect there. Fortunately for me, my intrepid task master of a guide whom I shall henceforth refer to as Mr. T (he finds the moniker hysterically funny) was right on top of it. “Connect with your heart, not your head”. How many times will I need that prompting? So I did, asking what wisdom Madame Damselfly had for me. She did a short flight from one leaf to another and sat even closer to me. I reached out my hand and slowly placed it directly under the leaf she was on, offering her to move onto my hand. She declined but did not move.
As I stood watching her, the mosquitos found me and a few thought my blood would make a fine breakfast. While I have no problem sharing, I do find the sting they cause to be quite annoying, so I either brushed them away or tried (unsuccessfully) to squish them as they fed. Damselfly called me on that.
– Take short hops. Small steps from one thing to the next will get you where you want/need to go. Many hops may be required to reach your next destination.
– Trust. Just as she showed trust by not flying off when I put my hand close to her, so I need to trust my guides as I move forward.
– Eat only when you’re hungry. The Damselfly eats for survival, and only eats what she is meant to eat; no GMO bugs or beetle bits coated with sugar. Eating fresh, organic foods is what is best for my body. And yes, any bugs on the food are added protein.
– Don’t get distracted. The mosquitos were there to show how easily we can get distracted by small things and lose focus of what is important.
So I listed her lessons twice in my head just to make sure I didn’t forget before I could write them down. I bent down to brush off one more mosquito and when I stood up again she was gone.
Lesson complete. Thank you, Lady Damselfly!
As I headed on down the path towards home, the woods were especially beautiful; the narrow earthen path closely guarded on both sides by low growing, light green ferns; the trees towering above. It was as if the fairies were waiting in the wings to greet me when I have become just a bit more attuned to them. In the meantime it is fun to watch the squirrels play hide and seek and the birds call to each other and hunt for breakfast in the undergrowth. As I was walking up the last stretch back to my car a pair of chipmunks darted across the path and one of them sat there staring at me, wondering at this odd creature that had appeared, unrequested, in their playground. A few moments of mutual perusal, then he disappeared and I finished my walk.
With gratitude to all I drove home to begin the rest of my day.