Bunny: Just let go and jump
In this painting, I see a bunny leaping with full abandon into the air, arms, and legs fully out embracing life. It’s interesting that I see this after the snake as bunnies can prey to snakes. But this little one is not afraid, it’s enjoying life to the fullest in this picture, ready to take on what’s coming next, trusting that it will be great.
I’m reminded of the Fool’s card in the Tarot deck. It depicts the idea of taking a leap of faith, jumping fully with no hesitations, fully trusting what’s about to come, believing that ultimately everything that happens in your life happens for you. This is when you make the decision to commit to something and live in this moment of full bliss and abandon. It’s not something I think I do often enough. I’ve always been a little held back, a little cautious. Maybe it’s because part of my personality is to think through things ahead of time, to consider all the possibilities and potential pitfalls before I take action. It’s a great way to slow down the process of things and also miss out on the opportunity to be fully blissful, but there are times, fortunately, when I’m able to let go and fully embrace the moment. The most recent time I did that was when I left everything I knew and was used to and headed to Northern California. My marriage had ended, our lease was ending, I wasn’t sure where to go next but I had landed an opportunity to do a mural internship with John Pugh, a well established and international muralist living in Truckee, California. So I put all my items in storage and booked a flight heading south of the border for a month and a half. Logically it made absolutely no sense. The old me would have preferred to have everything in place before heading out. Instead, my gut was telling me to go to a place I had never been before and live with people I didn’t know. Fortunately, I listened to my gut instead of my mind. I let go of control and I decided to be open to what was to come next. It was scary but also exciting. And although it wasn’t always easy, it turned out to be one of the best and most memorable moments of my life in very unexpected ways.
While I was there I learned a lot about what it takes to create giant murals and some valuable tips from a master at his craft. Still, I feel like I just scratched the surface of what that profession entails. I also found myself in the middle of a forest, high up in the mountains, connecting with nature in ways I had never done before.
During my off time, I was learning about nature and its inhabitants. I would go on walks every day, surrounded by giant trees, beautiful views, strange plants I had never seen before, and breathtaking waterfalls and rivers. My time in nature gave me a better understanding of what abundance means. I was in awe of the sheer beauty of mother nature in her natural habitat. And as weird as it may sound, I felt like I had a deeper connection to the animals living in the house because of it. It honestly sometimes felt like I was in a Disney movie.
In the house, I connected with two gentle giants, wolfhounds named Banff and Austin. Banff felt like my “little” guardian angel. When I went out in the forest on my own for the first time, he willingly followed me around even though he was tired from a previous long walk and kept checking to make sure I was not too far from him. It was the most adorable thing I had ever seen. Not that there was anything to worry about, but I felt safer with him around. Also, on my last day there, after both had been used to walking with me for a while, the best way I could describe what I witnessed was a celebratory goodbye dog dance from both of them just for me. It still brings tears of joy and gratitude when I think about it. We had just come back from our walk, and all of a sudden they started to run around in circles and play for no apparent reason around me in a way that I had never seen from them before. It lasted a couple of minutes and I just stood there looking and them displaying this little send-off dance for me.
The cats also had their way of communicating with me. There were two of them, a timid one name Six and an extroverted one named Lindsay. They took to me very quickly. Whenever the dogs weren’t around, Six would come and see me and soon she felt comfortable enough to jump on my lap and just stay there when the dogs weren’t around. Lindsay made sure I come to say goodnight and pet her every night before going to bed. She would meow at me to do so. And the nights I skipped going to see her or I came back later than usual, she was waiting for me in my bedroom. (She knows how to open doors). I remember random coincidences like the night before I told Lindsay to be nice to Six because they were the only cats there and needed to stick together, the next day they were lying coiled together in the suspended chairs. I had never seen them do that, and it surprised me so much, I think I took a picture of it.
There was another instance where I kept seeing stellar jays, on a daily basis. And one night I remember thinking how cool it would be to see some of the wild deer a little more because I kept missing them when they were around. The next day, as I was working on the table outside, the Jay started chirping a lot louder than usual so I looked up just in time to see two deer right in the backyard. As soon as I saw them, the birds stop chirping. As if they wanted to alert me since I asked to see them, and once I paid attention they stopped.
Nature is a true healer and teacher. I came back from this trip, changed from the inside for the better. I felt more open to new possibilities, more attentive to my surroundings and even more connected to nature in the city. This would not have happened had I not taken this leap of faith. And although it was not easy, when I got back to my home town, everything fell in place for me in ways I couldn’t have planned for. I found the perfect new home in the perfect location for me.
So what I get from this painting mostly is the importance to make the decision to let go, trust and jump. It may not make sense but if it feels right to you, just do it. It’s a reminder to trust your intuition, it will never steer you wrong, so make sure you pay attention to it and act on it when it feels like the right thing to do.
Look at the painting again, you will notice that you can also see that the bunny is falling backward as if it had been pushed out from a ledge. The same image can evoke a different story depending on how you look at it. That’s a decision you get to make. I could have perceived my situation as being akin to the bunny being pushed out of a ledge, falling into the unknown, but I chose to relate to the one who jumped out with her arms wide open, trusting that whatever was to come next would be better.
Now it’s your turn. When was the last time you allowed yourself to fully trust your gut and enjoy something without resistance? How did it feel? What happened? What did you learn from it? Is there another opportunity for you to feel that bliss again? Are you going to allow yourself to feel it and fully enjoy it? Where in your life do you need to just trust and jump with your arms wide open to the new and unknown possibilities?