I have a bad habit of connecting with dead people. Hmmm, is there a better way I could phrase that? I love history and I often find inspiration from men and women who have come before me. They aren’t just names in history books. They are living role models that breath inspiration into my every day life.
I spent the majority of my elementary school days convinced that I was Laura Ingalls Wilder.
In ninth grade I connected with Emily Dickinson.
In tenth grade I commiserated with Wheeze from Katherine Patterson’s Jacob Have I Loved. Okay, so she is a fictional character, but she sure was real to me.
In eleventh grade I followed Michelle Obama’s every move, haircut, and dress.
In twelve grade I fancied myself the benefactress of the misunderstood evil queen of France, Catherine Di Medici. In fact, I accidentally applied to college in her name. That’s kinda a funny story.
Today I found a new role model. Growing up, I lived on a house with two acres of forest surrounding it. Those woods became a part of me. Ever since, no matter where I live or am staying, I cannot survive without a forest to confide in.
In later high school life got tough for a few years there. My whole family suffered. The mountains became our escape, a sort of sanctuary. I could almost physically feel emotional weight falling off my shoulders as we drove up to the mountains on many a stormy weekend.
Never, however, have I been able to put my love, my need, and my connection with nature into words. Thank goodness, John Muir, my new alter ego has already done it for me:
(It is also a plus that Muir is the honoree of Muir Woods, my very favorite national park in the whole wide world.)