I am writing a book about wolves. about people and wolves. about what people think, feel, and believe about wolves. about what it’s like to be a human in a world where there are wolves. it is an awesome book, one I’m extremely grateful to be writing.
currently I am working on a section about nature and its impact on us humans. richard louv has written a book about children and nature titled “last child in the woods” in which he suggests that much of our population suffer from what he calls nature deficit disorder, especially our children. this resonates with me. in a sentence I find particularly meaningful for its insight he states:
“Given a chance, a child will bring the confusion of the world to the woods, wash it in the creek, turn it over to see what lives on the unseen side of that confusion.”
it isn’t only children who benefit from that time in the woods; we adults, too, can take our confusion, wash it in the creek, and explore nuances and understandings we hadn’t yet discovered. the only one who won’t benefit from time spent alone in nature is the one who isn’t yet ready to face oneself. children–blessedly–are naturally open to this kind of exploration and will remain so until the world convinces them they’re not. the answers, the solutions and understandings, rarely come as lightning bolts ~ though they may ~ more often adjusting us minutely and softly, helping us to breathe more deeply and corral the strength that resides within.
often we aren’t even able to articulate a question, but have an awareness that we’re unsettled. taking that to the woods, to the river, to the mountain, is important therapy, inexpensive and wildly effective.
much can be learned from studying wildlife, and the way wolves live is especially instructive for us humans. they form bonds with others, and are extremely loyal and protective of the space they share with their family. they nurture and teach and play with their offspring. they persevere; they only give up when it’s necessary to give up. they roam and explore but always come home. they howl.
it’s possible they take their confusion to the creek, splash around a bit, and come away better.
when we listen to our hearts and souls and remember who we truly are, we are drawn to the land, to the wild. and it is there that we can embrace our truths and let nature work its magic on us.