Each day, immediately upon rising, the very first thing I do, is to welcome the dawn from my bedroom window. Most times, I find the sky still cloaked in darkness, except for a thin line of exquisite brightness just above the mountaintops, promising the break of day, soon to arrive in all its glory. As I begin to sing and offer praise for the gift of this brand new day, the many magnificent colors of dawn greet me. Each day finds a thrilling palette of hues so intense and diverse, continuously transposing, from second to second. I am positively filled with awe as this superb display of nature unfolds before me.
But one day, rising slightly later than usual, I found the sun just beginning to peak over the ridge. As I set about my usual morning ritual, my eyes came to rest upon a tiny woodchuck, standing out in the meadow. He held his chubby little body fully upright on stubby hind legs. He too was facing the direction of the sunrise, and he remained in this same position, his back to me, throughout my celebration of morning. How serene was his countenance, how very absorbed in this moment in time, and I couldn't help but wonder....
What was going on in his tiny woodchuck mind as he stood there, gazing intently in the direction of the rising sun? Was he, perhaps, showing his delight at a new days dawning? Could it be that this little one was also offering up HIS praises for this beautiful new day? Are not ALL creatures equally grateful for the blessed light of day after the long, dark night? Maybe he was only thinking about how marvelous those warming rays would feel on his belly later on in the day when the sun gained its full strength. OR, could I be witnessing a woodchuck morning ritual, so like my very own? Perhaps I was sharing a special time of gratitude with this dearest of little fellow creatures. And I began to wonder how many other mornings we might have done so without my ever having noticed.
My Granny once told me to listen to the birds in the early morning hours as I lie in bed. How grateful they sounded for every new day beginning and how beautifully they sang out their praises at each new dawning, without fail! It wasn't until many years later that I discovered that they were merely giving their territorial morning calls, reminding their many neighbors that this space was still definitely taken and to keep out it they knew what was good for them. I remember how terribly let down I felt at the scientific truth of the matter. But now, once again, I find myself questioning what I have been taught in school. For I have seen the unexplainable on this and SO MANY other occasions. And I find myself embracing wonder anew, as I have been reminded by this gentle little chuck, to consider ALL of the infinite possibilities. The constant array of unanswerable questions. And to once again allow myself to view EVERYTHING in nature with a childlike sense of wonder.
Well, that is my story for today. And I hope it will help to inspire the same childlike sense of wonder in all of you as well, my dear readers.