Monday, May 19, 2008

nature saturation


My son was quite delighted to find ladybugs lounging in our yard this weekend. Me too - not only are they rather cute, they're also useful to the yard, and they're a symbol for positive luck, protection, and wishes coming to realization.

I'm currently reading Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder by Richard Louv. I find the topic very fascinating, though also acknowledge that the need for its publication rather absurd and startling.

My childhood was certainly filled with running after lightening bugs at twilight, tunneling through tall grasses surrounding a neighborhood creek, hanging out on my branch in the front yard tree, creating imaginary worlds in the backyard for hours with friends, lemon-aid stands on warm summer mornings. (And, I wasn't even what people would call a tomboy, though I did rip my favorite dress climbing a fence! :o)

My own children have a natural connection and reverence for nature. Surely all kids are born with it, and it only needs some basic nurturing? We started journeying out into the sunlight and breeze at young ages, letting them feel the textures of the world, taste the air, explore. Now, my son (age 5) would never in a million years want to stay inside (for tv or anything else) over the opportunity to go outside - run, collect pieces of nature, pretend walnut shells are frogs or freshly hatched chicks, make a bowl of potatoes out of rain water, dirt, and leafs, discover a patch of snails, blow dandelions, plant seeds, zoom on his bike while sunlight collects in his hair, walk through gardens or the nature center, pretend the arches of junipers are homes, feel worms and protect them from the too much light, make buildings from sticks. My daughter (nearly 2) is developing the same delight for the simplicity and joy that come from that state of being, the suspension of everything else, expansion of self, connection to the whole wide world. It's solace, but it is also incredible joy and delight.

For no reason
I start skipping like a child

for no reason
I turn into a leaf
That is carried so high
I kiss the Sun's mouth
And dissolve
- Hafiz


charliesgirl_992000 said...

I LOVE this picture and I LOVE Lady Bugs. I've always found many of them here and there in our homes, collect them carefully, make a wish and then set them free.
I also love what you wrote. We jsut spent the day playing in our woods and I had the funnest time watching Connie swing from vines into our creek like Tarzans jane. It was beautiful.
here she was in Long jeans and a long sleeve, once was white, shirt just having the best time. I took lots of pictures to fill my blog.
hugs, Tammy

tr3nta said...

thanks for drop by on MAD daily photo...


Murphy_jay said...

I like your photo and what you wrote.

I think your kids are very lucky to be able to experience nature first hand, especially with their mums.

In my city, there are not many places where kids can get close to nature. Sadly.