My Lesson from Nature today, came from two ducks that I discovered while I was out for my morning walk.  It had rained all night and was still raining while I was walking along a path through a field in my neighbourhood.  Off to the right of me, a large puddle had formed and as I walked toward it, I noticed a Mallard duck was happily paddling around in the puddle.

Seeing him there brought a big smile to my face.  He was a radiant spot of colour on this drizzly morning.  It took a moment before my eyes registered that he had a female companion.  Her mottled brown feathers were the perfect camouflage against the mud and dry grasses in the field.

What struck me as I stood and watched them was how they were managing to calmly go for a swim in this puddle.  Their relaxed movements made the puddle seem as big as a lake.  They simply swam around in circles and were making the most out of what they had.  They had turned this little puddle into their own swimming pool.

As I stood watching them, I was so grateful for their teaching.  They were showing me what it looks like to truly make the most of what you have at hand.

In this time of sheltering at home due to the Covid19 virus, it can to feel a little confining.  The things that we are used to doing in a given day, or even a week, have suddenly shifted.  The things we took for granted are no longer so readily available.  For myself, one of the things I have found the most challenging is having our nature park closed.  This park is a refuge for my husband and me.  It has been an adjustment to not have the forest trails and ocean beaches to walk along.  My encounters with nature in this park feed my soul.

So today, it was such a delightful surprise to discover these two Mallard ducks swimming in a puddle in the field a few blocks from my home.  They remind me that everything I need is right here.  I don’t have to go anywhere to find it.  They lift my spirits and help me see the resourcefulness of making the most of what you have.

On my walk home, I felt a little lighter.  Gratitude bubbled up inside as I recognized how little it truly takes to be so completely satisfied.  The encounter with these ducks brightened my day and reminded me that what I have is a lot.  I still have the freedom to walk in my neighbourhood and get exercise. I have the ability to gather with friends over Zoom and other social networking tools.  I continue to work from home and have enjoyed being creative with my cooking and trying new recipes.  There are so many little things to be grateful for as I make the most of what I have.

This experience of sheltering at home has been a humbling one in so many ways.  I have seen how often I jump in my car to run errands, rather than being more thoughtful and planning ahead.  I know there are changes I will be making, long term, as I see how the earth has responded to all of humanity settling in and slowing down.  I have always tried to live a sustainable lifestyle, but now I see how I can do even better.  There are many changes I can adopt as I seek to make the very most out of what I have going forward.

If you would like to read more Lessons from Nature, please click here to check out my book of nature reflections.

How are you making the most with what you have these days?