April 22 was Earth Day and it was appropriate to spend part of the day standing with our colleagues and partners of Children of the Setting Sun as they modeled what it means to be stewards of this planet we call home – Mother Earth. There were two themes that stuck with me as I walked away – gratitude and reciprocity.
Gratitude for the reminder of all this planet provides for us – the warmth of sun on our faces, the ground underneath us, the ability to grow and harvest food, the air that sustains us. Taking a moment to use all of our senses to feel the earth around us. I don’t know about you, but I don’t take enough time to be still and feel all that surrounds me. I was grateful to stand with others doing the same and feeling out connection to each other.
One speaker at the event spoke to reciprocity – what the earth gives us, and noting our responsibility to give back, to care and nourish this place we call home. Another shared this quote – “the one thing we hold in common is the earth.” Imagine if we could carry that thought with us every minute of every day. Would we make the same decisions if we recognized our unbreakable connections to each other and this earth, and our responsibility to future generations?
Like you, we are moving out of our home offices and starting to be in spaces with real human beings again. It is both wonderful and a little anxiety producing. I want to wear a button that says “don’t forget that you still need to wash your hands, and keep some physical distance if you feel ill!” Plus, realizing that people I’ve met over the last two years are both shorter and taller than I thought. Zoom was a bit of an equalizer in that way, which I hadn’t thought of before.
And on April 23, our team received an award from the Center for Human Services, and we’re sensing that same theme of reciprocity again. Our work and their work are integrally intertwined. To be thanked because we were able to leverage resources so that a partner could continue to have such an impact is humbling, because our opportunities occur because there are such amazing partners doing great work. That plus the dress code was ‘business casual.’ Imagine what that could look like after two years of zoom attire!!
Our hearts are with those who are struggling this month – looking for adequate housing, food, jobs, along with those arriving from Afghanistan, Ukraine, and other countries. They arrive here in the North Sound region every day, and our partners continue to have open arms to welcome them. Please reach out if you want to help support their work. We are raising funds for them, where 100% of what you donate goes directly to partner organizations.
Thinking of you as the sunlight in our days grow longer –