Her.

This is a sad place. We are heroes just for being here.

What does it mean to be heroic though? We have been taught, trained, propoganda’d that heroes are 1) most often men 2) must always white and 3) always somehow bold, dramatic, admired and somehow, unworldly.

I’d like to offer a hero badge for the vast majority of us just for showing up, and witnessing.

I woke up this morning and a watched a great-grandfather from Uvalde walking to the memorial site of his great granddaughter. He was crying and speaking to the cops that were following him. You did nothing to save her. Arrest me. Kill me, he cried.

This is where the stream of consciousness stopped. I’m not sure where it is going with heroes and a grieving great-grandfather. But I know I need to go on a hike and come back to this……

On my hike I saw a turtle and goats. The turtle made me coo and warmed my heart to see it walking ahead of me on the “people path,” then hiding its tiny head as it sensed my presence. The goats surprised me. At first I thought I was hearing small children laughing. Instead it was the baa of the goats. Now the electric fencing made sense- the goats were brought to help restore the forest. I watched them graze, run and bleat together.

For a moment I sat down on a bench in the middle of the forest, listening to the wind in the trees, asking for guidance about a vivid dream I had (which I did receive). I started to tear up about how in love I am with nature, and reminded how much She loves me, loves us all. She is my cathedral. She is is what I am in awe of, and She is what I keep returning to over and over again to make sense of a world full of sadness, where great-grandfathers bury their great-grandchildren. In a world where a young climate activist sits on a tennis court at a French Open, wearing a t-shirt that reads: We have 1028 days left. Nature is what regulates me.

Before the goats, I noticed an old tank and maybe a small utility type structure. It looked like something from another era, clearly no longer relevant, and what I noticed is Her, Nature overtaking this relic. She will always over take. Like the goats, she will always restore and take away. She gives life and takes it, always knowing exactly what is needed for balance. She brightens and darkens. She shimmers and dims.

I’m home now, back with Her, sitting in the sunset watching Her leaves glisten, the cottonwood seed fly, feeling like it might be a little late this year, but She knows best. She is the treasure. She is what makes sense when nothing else does and the world is sad. She is the hero that saves.

Are we with Her? 🐐 🌳 🐢

I am,

~Nikki, The Soul Reporter

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