What Has You Hogtied? Rescuing a Peace of the Wild

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The Peace of the Wild Things Wendell Berry

Click on photo to enlarge (for easier reading!)

After a painful money-argument with the hubster, I head to my favorite park for some healing perspective. As I leave, Bill tries to hand me two slices of his homemade whole wheat bread for the ducks. I pull the door shut in response.

At the pond, I immediately spot the gorgeous great blue heron. The sight of her, and this natural world, always wows me. My breath deepens.

The ducks and geese bring their downy babies. Their seamless water-wake further muffles my turmoil. I throw a few paltry pieces of sandwich crust, wishing I’d taken Bill’s peace offering.

I notice one gosling, swimming alone. When she finally comes to the water’s edge, she can barely stand. She struggles up and plunks down. Up and down until she loses her footing and tumbles back down the embankment. Oh no! The mama goose squawks and runs alongside her baby, helpless.

My heart has dashed outside my body and wrapped itself around this gosling goddess. Animals have always captured my soul. Once, while trying to rescue a fish that was dangling on a hook and line, stuck in branches, I fell into a very stinky pond. The camera in my pocket was never the same. But the fish was freed.

Finally the lil trouper gosling goes up, down, up, down and makes it to the grass. I exhale. I realize my stress won’t offer her strength. So I close my eyes and start sending healing energy. It’s all I’ve got. But according to our Dr. Emoto’s rice experiment, it’s enough.

As I call in the angels, the rest of the geese family continues grazing a few feet away. The diligent parents keep an eye on me. Eventually they relax and begin their extensive primping. I appreciate their trust.

The self I am when I listen… Nature is my wisest self made visible outside of me.Edveeje Fairchild

The Lil Goddess grazes and preens, too, but in an odd sitting position. She seems unfazed. Maybe her leg is just sprained.

The other goslings slowly move behind me, as they graze. Lil Goddess awkwardly inches in their direction and ends up right in front of me, only a foot away.

I am in love.

I continue my prayers. Then Lil Goddess starts peeping softly at my feet. I open my eyes and get the distinct feeling I need to WATCH. LOOK. I stare at the adorable fur ball and breathe. As she tries again to stand (but can’t) I see it. There’s a fish hook in one webbed foot and it’s attached to taut fishing line that’s binding the other leg.

Oh no, help!

I need Bill.

I phone in the troops. Ten minutes later, my family arrives, ready for action. Bill has various tools, and those two slices of bread. My anger has washed away.

It can sound selfish to take a break or go off to a quiet place. But as soon as you do sit still.Pico Iyer

One son has two pole grabbers (which I use to reach things at home) in case we need to fend off panicked geese parents.

My family huddles for the game plan. My oldest and I will use the bread to lure the geese further onto the grass. Bill and my youngest will fall in behind Lil Goddess and grab her. Gently.

Hoo boy, I’m nervous. Geese can be fierce and we’re about to break their trust. There must be twenty other geese hanging out in the shade ten feet away. Will they attack when we grab the goddess?

Suddenly one of the geese parents lets out a HOWLING HONK and dashes straight at Bill, who is now holding Lil Goddess – he got her! Bill hands her to my youngest (who is thrilled) as my oldest continues to throw bread, grabbers at the ready.

But the geese parents are suddenly uncharacteristically quiet and polite. Maybe they know we’re here to help?

Bill and I get to work.

Lil Goddess squirms at first but then relaxes. The barbed hook has left several holes in her black webbing and is presently piercing through two spots. Bill starts to snip the hook and gently ply and weave until . . . it’s out!

We switch to the other leg to remove the fishing line. It’s a tangled mess, and it’s very tight on her leg. Bill clips carefully at a few spots and, at last, I find an end to unwind and unwind and unwind until . . . it’s off! There are deep indentations where the line had been constricting her. Ouch. But there aren’t any serious wounds. Phew.

My youngest sets her down and she runs for her family. Free at last!

Joy!

Other than a slight limp, Lil Goddess is looking dandy . . . and no one was goosed. Mission accomplished, on several levels.

I came to the pond hoping to free myself. Life gave me an unexpected opportunity to offer freedom, instead. Without my having to try, it came back around and released me from my anger. It’s still astonishing how that works.

Don't just do something. Sit there

Bill gives me a hug as my family leaves the sanctuary. In my quiet hours ahead, the goose family comes and goes several times. Each time, Lil Goddess lags five minutes behind. Aw. My heart can so relate.

I spent my childhood feeling I could never keep up with my peers, my life. I thought I would always stumble and fall, up, down, up, down, because of my arthritis and dwarfism.

Lil Goddess’s predicament echoed my own binding BS (Belief Systems). When I feel fear (False Evidence Appearing Real,) and I withhold love from anyone, I deprive myself. It’s an angry tangled mess.

What has you hogtied?

My mind often insists that I should analyze and solve my problems, with fierce focus, by myself. Independent. An island. Alone.

But believing in that separation is exhausting. It’s a blindfold to the ocean of help around and within me.

When I go outdoors, I pause. Watch. Breathe. Be. Somewhere in the breeze, the rippling water, the bird’s song – my mind’s fearful grip is lulled to sleep. BS can’t hold up against the vastness. My soul can re-enter and peace returns. I peep quietly at the feet of majesty. 

You do not sit down and solve problems. Thomas Merton

When we yield to the present moment, we naturally offer our love and care to the world. We are freed from worry by resting in the Oneness that we truly are. Our aliveness is always patiently waiting in the wild wings.

A lil webbed goddess showed me that.

before rescue rangers copy

Lil Goddess before the M.A.S.H rescue mission 

 

after the rescue copy 

Lil Goddess grazing, afterward 

 

resting after the rescue copy

The family of geese resting together, after the rescue : )

with abundant love and downy peace,

Julie

If you liked this story, you might also enjoy these past posts:

Where True Control Really Lies and Celebrating Everyday Miracles & Mother Nature’s Magic

17 responses to “What Has You Hogtied? Rescuing a Peace of the Wild

  1. your beautiful story and lovely way of telling it filled me with love and tears of inspiration! this is so what I needed to read today, especially this part:
    “When we yield to the present moment, we naturally offer our love and care to the world. We are freed from worry by resting in the Oneness that we truly are. Our aliveness is always patiently waiting in the wild wings.”
    many many thanks,
    Marcelle
    xoxoxo

    • Julie Genovese

      I’m so glad to hear it Angel! Thank you for letting me know and an even bigger thanks for your big loving heart and sharing it with me (and the world.) Peep peep! xoxoxoxo

  2. Oh Julie , what a wonderful story. I was with you and baby gosling all the way. The first thing I thought about was mindfulness. As you show, it is amazing what can happen when we stop long enough to live in the moment and listen. Thank you for this beautiful reminder of the joys in the moments. And I’m so happy that anger melted away. :-)

    Kathy
    http://krpooler.com

    • Julie Genovese

      Kathy! Thank you SO much for reading AND commenting! You have such a beautiful heart and soul that it means a lot that my story resonated with you. Mindfulness and stillness offer endless gifts, and I’ve found Mother Nature to be the fastest way for me to go from head to heart. Much LOVE & gratitude to you!

  3. oh, you have caught my heart on the hook of your truth, just the perfect, harmless but potent way to do it. thank you for going to the pond that day, all of it. xooxS

    • Julie Genovese

      And you know what? It was Bill’s suggestion to go to the pond! I had to edit out a lot of my extraneous stuff (maybe that part was a perfect point!?) I thought he was going on automatic that morning, but when I look back, his WAS listening to his intuition. He even tried to hand me BREAD. Haw haw haw! THANK YOU for your always poetic & poignant comments. You melt my heart SBB… XOxoxoxox

  4. A woman after my own heart!!! How amazing that the Universe always knows exactly what to provide to get us back on target <3 And a little bit of "awwww' time is always appreciated :-)
    Thank You & Your Family for your kindness and service to our beautiful earthly home and its myriad of inhabitants <3 Love to You All!!!

    • Julie Genovese

      Oh Tracy thank you for reading and thank you for the THANK YOU! That made me go “awwww.” Our beautiful earth offers herself so generously that it was an honor to have the opportunity to help. And YES that sweet gosling was a perfect disguised messenger to get me back on track! And to give my whole family a chance to feel the reward of giving and being loving stewards. This Universe has such beautiful tricks up her sleeve! Lotsa love to you!

  5. Julie Genovese
  6. Dear Julie,
    Sweetest story ever. It reminded me of the Mother Theresa quote:
    “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.”
    Yay to you and your family for saving the Lil Goddess! <3

    • Julie Genovese

      Kathy my rawk star! THANK YOU for stopping by and reading! Oooooh yes I love that quote and it sure does apply here, perfectly. Our efforts that day were not history-making or earth-shattering but they moved all of us to a better place. Maybe that is the whole point! We added several drop of love to the pond, the goose family and to ourselves. Yay for love <3 Sending buckets of love & gratitude to you ;)

  7. Janey Davis

    Oh Julie! Amazing story and images! As usual perfection!

    • Julie Genovese

      THANK YOU Janey! My heart sure appreciate comments like yours :) and I’m so grateful for the loving cheers! xoxoxox

  8. MaryAnn Myers

    Beautifully told – Beautiful experience! Thank you for writing the little Goddesses’ story. Thank you for saving her. Thank you!

  9. Julie
    You are a beautiful writer. I always have tears in my eyes when I read your stuff. I, like you, find my peace in nature and with animals. It is here that I find it easiest to be mindful. I love the healing in this story and how your family simultaneously participated in your healing and Lil Goddess’s. Xxoo Lis

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