May the wings of the butterfly kiss the sun, and find your shoulder to light on, to bring you luck, happiness and riches today, tomorrow and beyond. – Irish Blessing
On the first day of spring I was driving to meet some friends for a theatre production opening, welcoming the longer daylight hours. I’d been thinking about things new, naturally, as we all do when the first day of spring arrives.
I also welcomed the clear, dry pavement, even though the extraordinary snows of winter 2014 were still evident on the farm fields; and remnants of snowplowed piles lingered on the roadsides. I smiled as I realized I could now see around the snowdrift by our driveway to spot oncoming traffic.
The thing I welcomed the most, though, was the giant vee of Canadian geese that flew up over my car off one of the snowy fields. Up, up and away in the early twilight skies they flew…startling me with my first token of new beginnings on this opening day of a new season.
A few days later, two geese flew in tandem above the trees as I walked to the mailbox. What is this thing with geese, I wondered, that we’re crossing paths?
Perhaps it was because I’d been thinking about a magazine essay I’d clipped by writer and artist Colleen Newquist. It was unusual in that the title – Follow Your Instinct – marched boldly across the page and my eye followed along with the flock of geese streaming across a magical full moon sky.
“How do they know where they’re going?” she asks.
How do we know which way to go, what action to take? And, where do our inner promptings come from, anyway? For me, sometimes, it’s fun to think of the “rule of three.” Whenever three things seem to show up that seem connected, I pay attention. Two things, even, will get me to thinking and imagining.
Plus, like Newquist, I’m learning to trust my intuition; and I share the idea of believing I will find my way – like the geese – when I listen to my inner GPS. I truly enjoyed her creative artistry, with the handwritten words nestled in the frame of the painting, so much that I felt inclined to follow up.
It takes practice and awareness to become more fully tuned in to our intuition on our pathway through life. Thankfully, my instinct nudged me to look up Colleen Newquist online, to see if I might connect with her, and to share her work and inspiration.
Eventually, we did connect. Amazingly, I learned that I was the second person who’d contacted her, within the same week, about referencing her work. That, in turn, amazed and excited her.
I’m glad I followed up on my instinct to step out in faith, to reach out, and to engage with someone whose work I admired. Now, I can enjoy the full spectrum of Newquist’s art, which I wouldn’t have discovered, had I not acted on my hunch.
I looked at these birds showing up as signposts along the way. Noticing such small wonders bring a touch of magic and beauty to otherwise ordinary days. Seeing the geese reminded me to look up – ready for new adventures to take flight in springtime.
The long awaited hibernation ends. New beginnings abound, such as choosing to embark on an impromptu trip to Florida to check on my husband’s dad. Yes, opening day of baseball season flexes the muscles of your inner batter; and the fans breathe a sigh of contentment – even if the day is spent on the road, listening to Detroit Tigers radio, heading south.
Watching the landscape transform from dull, brown drabness to spring green and blossoms – and finally to brilliant tropical hues of springtime in south Florida – had the desired effect. A brief flight of the snowbird was just the ticket, as my Grandma used to say.
As if to acknowledge that thought, an effervescent green dragonfly whirled playfully before me one morning, as I took a few moments to relax in the backyard warmth of the southern sun. It drew my attention inward, and also my intention to be more mindful of these spring things.
My message from the geese was to trust my inner voice, knowing that the right choices are there. As Colleen Newquist hand wrote on her drawing: Instinct tells me if I do what feels right, I won’t go wrong.
Even though a long road trip, this second Florida venture jumpstarted our inner landscape to think spring. Father-in-law was doing well, thankfully.
As for the dragonfly, I took it as a reminder that soon, up north, this record-breaking winter would succumb at last to the warmth of the sun.
It was a small wonder, this dragonfly, but one to take note of – for memories of dragonflies and butterflies and lovely springtimes back home.