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Finding a Way with Story

I have a terrible sense of direction. I’m one of those people who lives very much inside herself and though, while in some contexts this is adaptive, when navigating it’s not in service to my survival. Of course, with the advent of “way-finding for dummies” like google maps, and now smartphones, my already minuscule aptitudes have further atrophied. Eh, as a wise friend always reminds me, “ain’t nobody perfect.” 

 

I’m great at following my heart and intuiting my way through problems but when tasked with relying solely on my observational skills or intellect, I need to get out of autopilot and focus.  So while I am not about to go on a solo wilderness adventure where orienteering skills could save my life, I’m bushwhacking through a different jungle of sorts, trying to make sense of 28 different vitamins and minerals, their metabolic pathways, sources, deficiency/toxicity symptoms, and functions. The test is next week and I feel a little... lost.  

I remember learning over 10 years ago from naturalist and nature educator Jon Young, that a great way to find your way through unfamiliar territory is to tell yourself a story about what you observe and patterns you witness.  He did a little experiment with people in the Pine Barrens, a forest in New Jersey notoriously vast and easy to lose oneself in. The people who made up little stories along the way were able to find their way back, better than the bread crumb method! Now I can’t find this tale but will continue to look to verify it for the curious, but source material aside, it’s certainly stuck with me all this time.  

 Averse to rote memorization, I may tap into this naturalist wisdom and make up some stories about vitamins this week in the hopes I can sidestep the Saint Bernard rescue teams.  In service of this mission, Carly’s Cupboard is on the quieter side this week (and possibly next) with mostly the standard offerings. I’m looking forward to my three weeks out of the books and into the fields, mountains, and ocean (?!) to follow. And plenty of time wandering through the inner and outer worlds of spirit where an equal vat of wisdom can be found.