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dreaming my w’s

June 29, 2015

timeline: late June



1st visit to ZT, south of Annapolis (but still in my home watershed). Therapy incorporating dance/movement for processing and releasing bodily traumas.



  • Impatiently waiting for my name change to go through.
  • Assessing what went wrong in Philly & thinking differently for NM.
  • Preparing for Ghost Ranch writing retreat.



Home alone while Spouse went back to Kentucky. Only then realizing how much time I generally spend doing only what I think other people expect me to do, rather than what I want to be doing. Resolving to change that, even when Spouse returns.



Finishing up the Science Writing class at The Writer’s Center. Realizing I’m not ready to ‘write science’ just yet. Wondering how I could write about all the watersheds in HUC 0206, or even in HUC 02: what could I write? Who might want to read it? Where could I get it published?



Fieldwork in a fen. I wasn’t able to do almost anything I’d thought I was there for; I snapped some intriguing photos though. At lunch, listening to others talking about their favorite experiences of fieldwork, I realized my own previous experiences were precious to me because they weren’t sitting at a desk, inside a building; because I was immersed in the outside; because I was doing unusual things… but not because I was enjoying myself ~ Making myself do something I was terrified of. Spraining my wrist. Chiggers munching on my ankle. 8 hours of weeding while being wetter than I’ve ever been in my life. Heat exhaustion.

But if fieldwork isn’t what I want, what is?

= = =


  • Quitting grad school, with exhausted and demoralized relief.
  • Giving a talk about my 1985 experiences in SLC to a group of violent juvenile sex offenders, so that they might learn empathy. There were tears, and they weren’t all mine. I helped.
  • Continuing to revise letter to my parents about cutting ties with them. {Sent in October.}

= = =


  • Decorating and organizing our new house {Indianapolis}.
  • Preparing to begin my “freshman” year as a biology major at Purdue University.

= = =


Living back in Illinois with my parents, wondering what to do with my life now that it was “over”.

= = =


Probably picking dandelions. Hanging out with chicory and Queen Anne’s Lace in the Triangle; imagining I was a rabbit, or a rock. Swimming in our family’s pool. Basking in the sun like a turtle. Reading a book.


We’re in Cancer, a month of Water, of emotions and memory. Symbolized by a crab, and why shouldn’t it be a blue crab, a famous icon of Maryland?

I’ve seen a great deal more of Maryland than I ever did of Illinois.

Spouse would say, “You’re not really ‘from Illinois’ so much as you’re ‘from Chicagoland’. Illinois is the Midwest, but Chicago is its own thing. You’re not really a Midwesterner, exactly.”

After living in Indianapolis for 13.5 years — definitely the Midwest — I would have to agree.

All of which feels irrelevant now: I am ‘from’ Maryland because this is where I grew into the person I should be.

I took what I learned from Indiana, and planted it. Here, it grew. Here, I am blossoming with flowers I never even imagined.

Here, I have boundaries.

Here, I can choose.

= = =

Who ~ MWF, with none of the names my parents picked.

What ~ my life’s work.

Where ~ Baltimore County, Maryland. HUC 02060003. In the region of Chesapeake Bay.

Why ~ discovering & creating what only I can do {joy}, and growing into doing it skillfully.

When ~ now.

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