I’ve been volunteering at the Windmill Garden at the Dallas College Brookhaven campus for a few months now. It’s a North Texas Master Naturalist sponsored garden, absolutely full of life, and has been one of my favorite places in the city since its creation a number of years ago. I was recently accepted into the 2023 training program and I’m truly excited to be a part of projects like this and work with like-minded people.

I was talking with another volunteer this morning, a lady who has a good number of years of life experience more than myself, and she was saying how she used to spend so much time exploring her family’s property, acres and acres of walking through the woods so many years ago. And if she had been interested in plants or mushroom foraging or really anything other than the surface level of nature at the time, she wondered just how much more she might have discovered. She said only recently has she felt … awake.

How beautiful it is to wake up. It seems people do so when they’re ready. Or at least, to begin the journey of doing so. Sometimes younger. Sometimes older. Maybe never. And I mean, I get the desire to stay asleep, waking up can be downright frightening. And at the same time, it brings with it absolute beauty in everything. Everything.

I’m really loving this growing movement in wildscaping, or naturalistic landscaping. There is an element of letting go of control and attachment that seems to be a crucial element of waking up.

One thing I’d love to do after the North Texas Master Naturalist training is to combine as many of my loves as possible with others. To take people on walks and runs through nature, and introduce them to all the beautiful elements of nature around us, while also helping them to explore their own inner-nature using my training as a coach. To bring people to interesting places to sit around and breathe, or move through a sequence of yoga postures while breathing in the beauty of everything around us. To explore what it means to be human, together … to be curious, to listen to one another to better understand one another’s unique reality. To walk each other home (thanks Ram Dass).