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Come as you are

The Confluence Climate Collaborative was a newly-formed group when I was asked to provide some technical support in establishing the Collaborative’s online presence. I had been working with Sally (a founding member) at Studio Gaia for several years at this point and one of the many gifts of that work was the opportunity it afforded me to learn new skills. Among these (and I should add – I am very much still developing this skill) was the production & management of digital media.

So when Sally introduced me to this collection of passionate, intelligent, capable humans dedicated to a cause I very much believe in, I was happy to offer what help I could. Before long, I found I had been adopted as a new member of the group. This was both a great honor, and somewhat intimidating.

Here was this coterie of eco warriors, all with vastly more knowledge and experience than I, who somehow found me worthy to join their ranks? Imposter syndrome is a very real thing, and for me at least, an all-too-familiar phenomenon. Because the truth is, as much as I identified with the cause of environmental justice, I had done very little to further it. But what I eventually realized is that kind of thinking entirely misses the point.

Working for the good of the Earth is not about your environmentalist resume. And it is not limited to those who identify with the word “activist.” Everyone who remembers to the turn the light off when they leave the room, who brings their own bags to the grocery store, who opens the window instead of turning on the AC is doing this work. And those little actions do add up. All of these are habits that I practice on a regular basis. Habits I learned from my mother. When others see us making those little choices, they notice. And often, they change, too.

The most important thing I have learned from my time with the CCC is that embracing an Earth-loving lifestyle has to be accessible to all. Every being that lives on this planet is part of the ecosystem. When we remember that connection to each other and to our home, our perspective changes.

It may take more effort on my part to compost my food scraps instead of throwing them away, it may take twice as long to walk to my destination instead of driving there, it may be annoying to put on another sweater instead of just turning up the heat, and it may be uncomfortable (introvert translation: terrifying) to reach out to policymakers and express my views publicly, but when I think about the fact that I have those options when so many others don’t, the choice becomes obvious.

If by my everyday actions I can ease some of the burden for my Earthling family, I want to make those changes. The beauty of this group, and these 40 days, is the invitation to all of us to do what we can with what we have and know that our contribution is valuable.

We invite you to celebrate those contributions and our connection at our Earth Day event, Spring into Healing, at the Fuller Dome on April 24th. Come as you are.

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