Hello, your life is waiting!

Most people go through life thinking, ‘I’ll show up and kick some ass when I’m bullet-proof and perfect.’

I was zoning out in my car listening to NPR’s Ted Radio Hour when I heard these words – and snapped to attention. The speaker was research professor Brené Brown, who was discussing her popular TED talk, “The Power of Vulnerability”. Obviously, she struck a nerve.

Stormy sky over Green Cay Wetlands

Stormy sky over Green Cay Wetlands

This life is so fleeting – just a cosmic flash, really. Yet many of us avoid vulnerability and risk at all costs. So afraid of making a mistake and looking like a jerk that we wait…and wait…and wait… for the perfect moment to fall in love, to express that big idea, to take a leap of faith or follow our passion down a new path.

I was reminded of life’s impermanence yesterday.

It was “golden hour” at Green Cay Wetlands, just before sunset.  Birds were wading through the marsh, and the sky was filled with roseate spoonbills, whistling ducks, green herons and ibises flying to their roosting spots – a truly idyllic scene!  I came across a group of birds feeding, and felt quite serene as I watched and photographed them. That is, until…

Tricolored Heron looking for dinner.

Tricolored Heron fishing for dinner.

I’ll spare you the gruesome details, but I will tell you this: One moment  a young little blue heron was wading along peacefully, and the next moment he was gone – pulled into the water by a hungry alligator that had been lurking beneath the vegetation. In an instant, all that remained were a few white feathers.

Little blue heron juvenile before caught by alligator.

RIP, little blue heron.

Needless to say, I was horrified, and did not stick around to snap any further photos.  But I thought a lot about that little blue heron today, and the lesson he left me. Life is happening. Now. At this very moment. And in the blink of an eye, it disappears.

So let’s take a look at some birds and wildlife who know a thing or two about living in the moment. This is what they do:

They go exploring – sometimes with friends.

Common Gallinule chicks go exploring

Common Gallinule chicks go exploring

They try to fly, fall, then get up and try again.

Cattle egret chick flaps its wings.

Cattle egret chick flaps its wings.

They love to play.

This racoon cub loves to play.

This raccoon cub loves to play.

They don’t take themselves so seriously.

Laughing gulls, Flamingo, Everglades National Park

A group of Laughing Gulls share a joke.

They’re not afraid to go out on a limb.

Roseate Spoonbill going out on a limb.

Roseate Spoonbill going out on a limb.

Sometimes they stick their necks out.

Tricolored heron sticks his neck out for a fish.

Tricolored heron sticks his neck out for a fish.

Say hello to life today – it’s time to kick some ass!

6 responses to “Hello, your life is waiting!

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