It was a quiet morning. I was holed up in a hotel room at the mouth of Bryce Canyon, working on this book. Working on my life. I stayed in bed for a while— thinking, pondering, wondering . Finally I got up, went to the restaurant for coffee and a roll, then went for a drive. Soak up nature, I told myself. This journey is a living meditation.
I drove into Bryce Canyon Park, letting the massive stones, the colors and spirals, the eternity of the canyon touch me, heal me, soothe my soul. An hour later, when I felt calmer and more energized, I got back in the car and headed for the park exit. Several cars were jammed up. I wondered if there had been an accident. Then I saw why the others had stopped. A mother deer was standing on the side of the road, gently nuzzling her fawn. She stood by her offspring’s side, protecting and nurturing.
Many of us barely remember a mother’s nurturing love; some of us do, with fondness and joy. Many of us have experienced the great gift of nurturing and loving our children, a joy that opens the heart in a way little else can. Some of us have learned to give and receive nurturing in other ways, to people outside our immediate families. But most of us, along the way, have learned the gift, the wonder, the awe, and the healing blessings of nurturing. Giving and receiving is a continuous cycle, a necessary part of the road to the heart.
Learn to nurture others. Nurture and love yourself. The whole universe will rally round and help. Others will applaud your efforts and learn from them, the way the passersby stopped to gaze on the deer and her fawn.
Celebrate the power of nurturing. Release its gentle love. It rests inside each of us, waiting to be seen, appreciated, and brought to life.
From the desk of Melody Beattie
Originally posted October 21, 2014
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