You were born to do this

I took my daughter to get her driver’s license yesterday. It was a process dominated by waiting parents and their nervously eager teenagers. Most parents, like me, were hanging back watchfully letting their child lead the way. Then I noticed a man come in with a domineering air, telling his son exactly what to do and where to sit. The poor boy seemed to have no confidence at all in himself.

I remembered this scene this morning while in the backyard drinking my coffee. A father cardinal was perched on a branch of my pine tree, feeding his fledgling baby. My first instinct was to help them. As if they needed help! How arrogant of me. Wild animals have raised babies for millions of years without my help. Even though the process of a baby bird flying at a mere 2 weeks after hatching and its parents tending it dutifully seems complicated to my mind, it is completely natural and works well. Birds have natural programming to tell them what to do.

So why do we think we’re any different from these birds? Why do we think, like the man in the license office, that humans need to be guided and told what to do? Some of us feel compelled to direct others. And even more of us remain passive, waiting for guidance or permission. But I think that perhaps we all have a native programming and if we listen to ourselves we will hear it.

Create. You were born to do this. Humans have been doing this since the beginning of time. You don’t need anyone to lead you.

Red Damselfly on a leaf by the river

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