When I finally found the energy to shift from watching a tree grow, I began reading Diane Ackerman’s “A Slender Thread”. The story threaded crisis line work and watching squirrels. It was wonderfully written and sparkled in my dulled mind. As I journeyed through this book I too began to watch the squirrels in my backyard. They played at the base of that same tree I watched grow. The squirrels recognized me and one earned the name Graytuft. The name matched the extra tufts of hair on Graytuft’s ears. It also matched the softness in sound I needed, as my ears were already strained from tinnitus.
While watching I noted squirrels are preyed on, yet incredibly resilient and resourceful. When I dig deep inside myself it is the squirrel energy that provides what I need. I am forever grateful to Graytuft and the generations after, including Chubby Mary, who bring their children to this tree. The children are now the adults, and they visit when I walk outside – always keeping a safe distance.
To my reader friends and my animal friends…play safe my friends, play safe.