On Friday I had a run in with a worm. Walking to work I was startled when the stick on the path moved. I looked down to find an earth worm heading across the path in a perfect 90 degree trajectory. Joel and I stopped to watch him. He was moving swiftly until he got half way across and then, what to us looked like small pebbles, stopped him cold. He could not figure out how to get past these things. After a few tries his response was to turn around and head back. However, by then he was tired. He made mistakes, got caught by more of the pebbles. He became covered in dust and it was hard for him to move. He got confused and spent a long time going parallel to the grass. He was so close. I wanted to scoop him up and help him. He finally righted himself and got onto the grass. He pulled in the front of his body but left the tail out. Too tired to move any more.
I thought this was some pretty powerful story medicine. First a moment of thankfulness that I have a partner who would sit and watch this unfold with me. Thankfulness to have a job where stopping to look at the worm would not get me in trouble. I found many lessons in the story of the worm. It reminded me of how easy it is for us to judge someone else's obstacles as little when viewing them from another perspective. It reminded me that a slight change in angle can put you on a very wrong/different path. I wondered, as he was half way - why not keep going- as he spent at least as much energy going back. What do I turn away from? I saw that he could have followed pavement forever and not found grass again. It make me think about how we take healthy risks for ourselves. So much I learnt in those moments with the worm. What was your worm this week?