Counting sheep for healing

There’s nothing like going to the petting farm on a sunny day to soothe one’s soul.  That’s just what I did yesterday at the Seattle Zoo and spent the bulk of my time ‘baa-hing’ at the sheep, counting them and the chickens.

I had the inspiration from an amazing bodywork session I received from my colleague Hilary Bolles in which the ‘comfort’ the right side of my body was seeking ‘told me’ to go count sheep.  Now, bodywork is not an exact science, you could interpret that to mean go to sleep, which isn’t a bad thing to do either.  But the sheep in my imagination were more insistent I go find them and hang out with them.  Talk about interesting ‘Marching Orders’ as Julia Cameron of Artist’s Way calls them.

So, after my session, I headed out to the zoo.  When was the last time you went there by yourself?  I don’t think I ever have.  It’s usually a place your family takes you, or you go with friends.  Out of the hundreds of people there, I counted one solo person other than myself.  But oh my, what an incredible space for healing!  The hippos basking in the sun calmed my breathing.  The monkeys climbing about reminded me so much of our evolutionary connection.  My favorite exhibit (aside from the sheep) had to be the penguins diving into the water and being speed demons through that medium to make up for the lack of being able to fly in the air.

Amazing place.  Wish there was a frequent flyer card for the zoo…I’ll have to investigate that, maybe it comes with a membership.  I’ve found my new hangout!  When I was a child, I spent much more time in the natural world, even wanting to become a biologist which I studied initially in college.  But as I walked the zoo’s paths, I was reminded why I didn’t pursue biology as a career.  When it got to the dissections of frogs, cats and pigs, I ‘felt’ the loss of life of those animals for the sake of science.

I didn’t have words at that time to describe the feeling, but I didn’t want to do more dissections.  I prefer the animals of the world in their whole essence rather than reduced to their anatomical parts.

Anyway, I digress, counting the sheep at the petting farm at the zoo was good medicine.  Almost makes me wish I lived in the country, ah, but the trade-off for being close to a metropolitan area.  Maybe for now, I’ll just cozy up with my wool blanket in the cool evenings and bahh myself to sleep!


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