Saturday, August 21, 2021

Living My Dream

On this day last year, I sent out a desperate note to the Lake Stewards of Maine: 

"I am distressed that I might have found Najas minor in my cove today. I saw some floating in after all the boating, and after a closer look, located where some is rooted in my cove. As soon as I noticed how obvious the serrations are, I panicked. I'm assuming it's the invasive European Naiad, but would desperately like confirmation or declination!"

Turns out my suspicion was right, and it led to a year of busy and exciting involvement with the Lake Stewards of Maine. I was thrilled by the knowledge and connectivity my participation gave me, and was ever more enthusiastic about participating in my environmentally-themed interests. As a university student, I had desperately wanted to save ecosystems, species, the environment, our planet. I studied environmental science, but put my conservationist aspirations aside to nurture and raise my own children (and expose/inspire them to environmentally good practices instead).

After my children left the nest, my chosen role as native plant nurturer and groundskeeper at home expanded into the aquatic environment ... and the monikers 'swamp maiden,' 'pondweed,' or 'mudmonster' were proudly added to the terms of endearment to which I am referred, after persisting in weeding and clearing my cove of invasive plants against all odds. I LOVE being involved with (what I believe is) helping the planet, even if only on a small scale, because you know "one person can make a difference, and everyone should try." (JFK). I never knew that one day after my child-rearing days were over, I'd get this opportunity to be a steward of my lake environment. 

Through the years of parenting and homeschooling, I never lost my passion for environmental issues, and continued pursuing these interests purely for the love and pleasure it gave me. My daughter wisely noted, "Mom, you've been training your whole life for this," which is essentially true. I get to indulge my passion and see it reap benefits, on my own terms and in my own time. I'm living my dream!

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