You are in the in-between. I am in the in-between. We are in-between where we were and where we are going. It’s hard for us to accept being in that middle place. But it’s the space we always occupy. In my old life, I taught environmental studies. I took grade eight students to explore and study the Riparian ecosystem.
If you’re familiar with ecology, you’ll know that the Riparian Zone is the transitional space between two ecosystems: Land and water. The Riparian Zone is neither in the water, nor on the land. It’s the space in-between. If it was not between these two zones, it would cease to exist. This space in-between is rich in biodiversity. It is rich in nutrients. It supplies food, shelter, and water for a HUGE amount of species. It is a place of abundant life and resources.
We need to protect the Riparian Zones. Just like we need to protect our own in-between.
Riparian Zones stabilize the banks of a river, and reduce flooding and erosion. Our in-between helps us stabilize and make sense of our past experiences, learn from them and prepare for future floods.
Riparian Zones filter toxins out of water and keep our environment healthy. Our in-between filters out what’s truly important now. Not in the past, not in the future but now.
Riparian Zones provide critical habitat, food, and shelter. It provides all the needs. Our in-between has the most resources and clues to get you to where you need to be.
Sometimes Riparian Zones dry up. Sometimes they flood. But they also recover.
I feel like there is a metaphor in here that’s almost too obvious. So, I’ll leave it to your wild imagination to figure out where you want to live.
But, the key is in learning that our future will always be steeped in the past and a place we’ll never actually get to achieve. Future work is intrinsically connected to both sides of the zone; what we have already experienced and what we can’t yet see AND, most importantly, occupying the powerful and abundant space of being in-between.
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