Self Reflections

I was born into this world 64 years ago today. It has been a long journey around the Medicine Wheel, and I now find myself in the North at this period of my life. Crone, now Wise Woman … a title I now wrap myself in like a skin laid upon my shoulders. This time of the Wheel is one of wisdom, introspection and freedom. My walk with Mother Earth has been with me since I was small. She was part of my environment, but more in my imagination and within my play dreams. I was born in the 1950’s when choices for women were limited. One could grow up to be a housewife, secretary, waitress or an airline stewardess. Women did not have the language or words for Feminism or Enlightenment.

I had an alter ego which I named Barbara Cowboy. She was no little girl but a full grown woman and feral. She could wield a knife with precision, wore pants with leather chaps, could ride a horse bareback without reins and knew the names of the plants and critters in her world. She jingled as she walked, with silver conchos and bracelets on her wrists and her hair was braided in a thick tail down the middle of her back. She lived outdoors in all kinds of weather and whooped when the storms moved through. She walked through my dreams at night, and went before me in my play time. I wanted to be HER when I grew up. I have always considered Her my guide, an avatar, so to speak and She was/has been with me as I grew into my adulthood as a woman.I’ve made both good andpoor choices in my living, but when it came to building a career direction I chose to follow Her guiding compass. I attended college late, as a single parent with two young daughters in tow. I voraciously gobbled up classes in botany, biology, ornithology, mammalogy, ichthyology, dendrology, forest ecology, soils, hydrology and anything else that piqued my understanding of the natural world we live in. I completed degrees in Wildlife Biology, Forestry, and graduate studies in Wetland Ecology. I have worked as a botanist, restoration ecologist, big game biologist, wetland specialist, plant biogeochemist and physiologist. I know the names of critters, plants, soils, herbs and understand a bit of how this miraculous world wags with its large nutrient, water and atmospheric cycles. My breath is Mother’s Breath. My Heart will forever be with Her…… And, I can wield a knife with great precision……

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