In every persons life there are watershed moments which shape our lives. I grew up in a household where I was told, “children are to be seen and not heard”.  I always felt that I was not good enough. I was frequently shamed. I became a perfectionist to try to please my parents and everyone else in my life. None of it helped. I held on to deep-seated resentments. I developed hypertension at a young age. I was lonely and had few friends.

I spent a lot of my childhood outside in nature.  I didn’t feel comfortable around other people.  I loved being with animals and plants outside. I took notes on what I observed and fancied myself being Henry David Thoreau at Walden Pond. I received a microscope and proceeded to observe nature through this microscope. My whole life was a microchosm within the world.

As I got older, I decided that I couldn’t spend the rest of my life this way. I was concerned that I wouldn’t be able to earn a living and support myself. I forced myself to be more sociable. It wasn’t easy because I never really felt comfortable around others.

I went to college and decided to study nursing, specifically the field of psychiatry. I thought I could be helpful to others who had psychiatric issues. As it turns out, I married a man who over the years showed himself to be a psychopath and a heavy drinker. For many years, my husband refused to work and I was the sole wage earner for our family of five people.

I worked as a psychiatric nurse at a state hospital. My job was extremely stressful and negatively affected my health. I reached a low point in my life when my father died. I fell into a deep grief.  I was extremely depressed and stressed. At this point in my life, I started studying spirituality. As I worked through my problems, I learned to forgive myself and others.

I realized that I had walled off my heart as a protection from being hurt by others. The energy of grief and shame was hurting me and needed to be released through and out of my body. I worked on this for several years using meditation, journaling and energy work until my heart opened.

After I retired, I decided that I wanted to have chickens. I had chickens when I was a child and to me they were a link to something pleasant from my childhood. The chickens offer me unconditional love touching my heart and helping to keep me grounded. I used to help  my grandfather with gardening as a child, another fond memory. Gardening and chickens are my anchors.

The cycle continues to be renewed. I am connected to the rhythms of the earth. Chickens and gardening have allowed me to open my heart and in turn pass heart energy and love on to others through the work that I do.