May the 4th be with you! Can you believe that as I sit here writing, it is snowing outside my window? Brr, glad to be indoors today. For this week's edition of GotW I have chosen a very special little lady of mine. It can be quite a process for me when it comes time to choose who I will write about each week. Currently, part of this process is to also consider the current pandemic, and what sticks out for me. This past week what stood out the most for me is that people are either individually or collectively, are really starting to use their voices. Protesters are gathering. Social media to me seems more toxic than ever. Full of misinformation, fear, anger, conspiracy theories, debates and arguments etc. Not all of the discussions or debates are productive or kind. Locally it seems the big issue is "locals vs cottagers", and whether or not they should have a right to access their cottages, our fragile healthcare, and depleted resources. This week I felt like the energy everywhere was moving in a vortex. So many emotions, and serious problems the world over, and still no end in sight. Everyone is stressed and exhausted, emotions are heightened and everyone longs for some sense of balance or normalcy. We all want it. It will get better. We have to have faith. <3 So my choice for GotW this week was easy when it comes to voice. No one even comes close to the decibel of sound that this little one can emit when she has something to say. All will hear! Where we live it even echoes across the fields. In my heart, and especially in the year that she was born, Star was a very big support and an incredible help to me in finding my "voice" again, while healing and moving through my PTSD symptoms.
Star was born on August 24, 2016. She was born a single kid, which is not common in the Nigerian Dwarf breed. High multiples are the norm, with up to 7 kids born in a single birth recorded. When goat kids are born as singletons, they have a different kind of way or attitude about them. They are more independent and usually more outgoing and confident. Star was born out of one of my very sweetest (and most special to me personally) young goats. She was also the last kid born of the year, meaning for sure she would end up super spoiled as every visitor to the farm always wants to cuddle with the smallest goat. In 2016 I chose Star Trek for my theme, and for weeks tried to find a character name that fit with her personality of who she was. At that point in my life, she like her mother a couple of years before her, was literally the sun that shone through the darkness of my deepest depressive days. Her mother I named Soleil. With no character name to choose I went with Star Trek, as she would be called Star either way. Both of these beautiful souls, guiding lights showing me the way. Star and I had a close bond right from birth. Star by nature is more reserved and shy. She doesn't choose to come forward to connect with people personally very often. She seems very particular, but she does seem to have one specific gift. She helps people to find their voice. She helped me find mine, and I have witnessed her work her magic for others in the same way many times. Star is not subtle. Although she is small and stands only 19" tall, the voice on her sounds like a foghorn on a lighthouse. I am often stunned speechless as she finds new and interesting sounds to shriek out of her adorable little face. When she REALLY wants to be heard, you will see her brace her feet first so she can project her voice with maximum force! She even has a sound she makes when she is sad that is almost like a goaty half grown/ half purr sound. Wouldn't you know it, this super smart little goat seems to even know where my monitor in the barn is and she will holler directly into it when I'm in the house if she wants my attention. Just last week she woke me from a sound sleep by bellowing like a banshee for a boyfriend at 3am. I did not comply lol.
So I chose Star this week because like her, I see people everywhere right now, finding their voices and trying to be heard. When people are uncertain and feel threatened, as we all currently do during this pandemic, out of necessity or perhaps even for the first time, people are speaking up. However, not everyone is choosing to do so kindly or compassionately. This poses a great challenge and definitely can work to heat situations up when emotions are all so high already. As we all work through these difficult days, being mindful of each other is so important. Patience, empathy, kindness and compassion are all in daily need, and I think that we all have to try our best to do our part. I enjoyed a lovely chat with a few volunteers this afternoon about how during these stressful times, even making simple decisions in the grocery store can be more difficult and take longer. As most aisles now go in one direction, it is not uncommon to be stuck in an aisle, waiting on someone to make a decision - or even several someone's! Take a breath. Practice patience. If you do choose to use your voice, please do so with kindness. Not all demands can be met immediately, especially during uncertain times like this.
Practicing patience, especially in social distance situations, will help you to have a positive energy output as well, which is good for your own health and karma. The only thing you can control are your own individual thoughts, decision and actions aferall, so how will you choose to move forward? Something I saw on a sign once really hit me and has stuck with me for years. I am not saying that I am able to follow this principle in all situations, however I do try to bring it forward when I am uncertain if I should speak. The sign said "Before you speak, THINK."
T= is it true?
H= is it helpful?
I= is it inspiring?
N= is it necessary?
K= is it kind?
Pretty basic, and often I find if I bring it to mind and ask the questions, I choose to not speak. Maybe this can help some of you as well, as it does me. Hopefully we will all see an easing of the infection rate as well as the lockdown soon. Until that day comes though we must try to remember we're all in this together. Until then, try to choose love and kindness wherever possible and we will all see better days again soon. ~ Angee <3