March 29, 2012

Learning from the Past: Opportunity for Reflection

Today I stumbled upon this blog post from 2006, when I was only in my 2nd semester of vet school. I was miserable, and yet I stuck it out for a couple more years. And, tragically, there wasn't any gain for all that pain. Quite the opposite effect occurred, actually. I always said I wouldn't do that to myself again; that if I ever had a nagging dreadful feeling about an aspect of my life again, I would move on. Stick-to-it-iveness is not necessarily the smartest way to handle a situation--in fact it can be dumb.

These two quotes also guide me, as I process my current life:

I am trying to make non-impulsive but somewhat scary decisions to follow my passions. My eyes are wide and my ears are pricked for any and all hints that I'm heading in the right direction. So, remember the cottontail and the hares I saw in Bishop?

I don't think I've posted about this before, but the rabbit seems to be a totem for me. My "power animal" if you will. I grew up with rabbits and understand their calmness and patience, their friskiness, their alarm, and curiosity. As far as what I could learn from rabbits, I have always identified most with the need for patience. When I saw the hares and cottontails bounding away in Bishop, I was reminded to look up more about what 'medicine'/lessons the rabbit has to offer. This time, a note I wrote in my medicine cards book a while back struck the largest chord with me:

"Rabbits are guides into the shadow world where all of our personal fears lie. When rabbit appears it is time to examine those deep reflexive fears that hold you back from growing. Do you keep dashing for the safety of your old patterns every time something new or challengin presents itself? If so the rabbit asks you to face your fears with compassion for yourself. Accept that it is part of human nature to feel fear at times but also to believe that our fears need not paralyze our growth and movement."

While I do not feel paralyzed, or like I'm running to safety of old patterns, I do recognize that I might be stifling my own growth in some ways by remaining a Never Quitter.

My altar from this summer, the rabbit central.

One of the few things I salvaged from when my house burned down--of the entire Medicine Card animal deck, this is all that was left.

I still have some time to come to a conclusion.

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