I love turtles and have loved them for as long as I can remember. If you know me, you have heard me tell the story many times of when I was a little girl and my family first moved upon the mountain. I would spend the day gathering turtles and putting them in a bucket, pool or barrel so I would have a family of turtle to talk to and be friends with. I wasn’t trying to capture them or hold them prisoner. I just wanted to spend my time talking to them and being with them. Everytime I would gather the turtles I would come back the next morning and they would all be gone. I would cry.
One day I asked my grandfather why my turtles kept disappearing? He sat me up on his soft and loving grandpa knee and said “Rass, they aren’t your turtles. Turtles need to be free to roam the earth.” I was sad that I couldn’t have a party of turtles surrounding my every move, but even at the age of 4 I understood Grandfather’s lesson.
My love for turtles continued as I grew older. More than once I would open the door and bail out of a car to save a turtle that was crossing the road. Somewhere in my journey I had made it my mission to save the turtles. I took this job seriously.
Today at the age of 40 I have to admit I have not lost my ability to think like a child and to have that childish innocence that I had back then. Often I go back there and apply my “childhood” lessons to my daily “adult” life.
Today I was thinking about where turtles live… where do the turtles live?
A turtle is never homeless. You see it doesn’t matter if it lives in the ocean, the pond or in the bucket in my backyard. A turtle makes its home wherever it parks it’s shell. It doesn’t compete with others to see who has the fanciest carpet, the best view, or the most space. It is just happy to have it’s shell. A turtle’s shell protects the most important thing in a turtle’s life… it’s heart. So the turtle picks up its home and carries it with it everywhere. Home is afterall where the heart is…
Now see, in my honest, humble opinion we could all learn a LOT from turtles. It doesn’t matter if we live in a mansion on the hill, a one room shack in the woods or a park bench under a tree….what matters if the amount of love in our heart and that we carry it with us everywhere we go.
Where do you live?