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How saving the worms taught me a valuable lesson about “bossiness”

by Leah Morgan, CCAP

Hopefully my childhood musings aren’t boring you yet, because I actually have a lot of them to share. Life as an only child provided me with ample opportunity for imagination and countless hours of alone time to get pretty deep into my weird obsessions. One of those said obsessions were worms.

As we all know, the beginning signs of Spring are the warm and wormy Spring rains. Lots of rain, brings lots of worms. March in Ontario, when I was growing up, was usually still pretty snowy, but here in B.C., it is the beginning of our “warmer” rainy season.

When I was little, I became obsessed with these strange little creatures. I couldn’t figure out which end was the head and which end was the bum. Let’s be honest here, I still can’t. They would wriggle and squiggle in both directions effortlessly depending on which direction I happened to be prodding them. I was curious to find out if it was true that if you cut them in half they would become two whole new worms. The fact that this was even a possibility pretty much blew my little mind!

When I considered that decapitating worms might be an experiment that many children would carry out, I became extremely concerned with the general well being of the worm populations of the world. I would get genuinely upset when I saw a worm drowning in a puddle or one that had been stepped on in the street. The absolute WORST was when I saw a worm that had shrivelled up and died once the sun came out after a good Spring rain.

Drowning, stepped on, and dried up dead worms became a serious source of anxiety for me. So much so, that every time it rained, I made it my personal responsibility to go outside and remove every worm that I saw out of potential harm’s way. This of course, was a losing battle because when you pick up and move a worm, nine times out of ten it will continue moving in the same direction as it was going when it was picked up. It was at this point that I realized that I was going to need some help. This was too big of an undertaking for one small person. I needed to recruit some like-minded worm saving soldiers. Thus, my Powsy Wowsy Worm Club was born.

I talked to my friends at school and convinced them how much more fulfilling their lives would be if they spent their rainy recesses outside with me saving the worm population of Kitchener-Waterloo. I was quite extraverted as a child, so this was a pretty easy task for me. I quickly convinced all of my friends that this was their civil duty as kids to make sure all the worms survived the rains and more importantly had been safely relocated to a good pile of dirt before the sun came out.

The early days of the Powsy Wowsy Worm Club were full of laughter and joy. We were all outside in the rain and in the mud picking up and relocating worms to their forever homes 10 feet away from where we found them. Those were joyous times for all of us. But when the sun came out and there were no more worms to relocate I faced a very serious dilemma. What was I going to do with my worm saving soldiers when there were no worms to save? This is when my drill sergeant self came out in full force. I had all my club members doing jumping jacks and making snow angels on the soggy ground, playing Simon Says became my go-to sunny recess activity. I basically just bossed everybody around.

They all listened to me for a while, but then one day there was a Powsy Wowsy Worm Club revolt. Recess came and I was about to start listing my daily commands and all my members did a full walk out. Everyone quit my club. I’m pretty sure it was my friend Jesse who had the courage to come up and tell me that I was just too bossy and no one wanted to be in my club anymore. She told me that I was pretty much on my own in my mission to save the worms and that I needed to stop being so bossy if I wanted to have any friends at all. Considering that we were probably only 7 or 8 years old at the time, these were pretty wise words for my friend to tell me. I can imagine the secret meetings and planning that this took to have a full club walk out and for her to tell me that I really needed a reality check if I was going to maintain any meaningful friendships in my life.

I decided to reach out to Jesse while I was reminiscing the other night. I asked her if she remembered the Powsy Wowsy Worm Club. She remembers the club fondly and said that she remembers us saving worms from puddles and that it was just her and me and a bunch of boys and that I would boss all the boys around….sounds about right, LOL.

The next day she sent me a quote that just she just happened to see on her friend’s social media feed that morning. It read “Little girls who go around after it rains and pick up the worms off the sidewalk and throw them back in the dirt are the cornerstone of society and we should all strive to have that level of compassion for each other and for the natural world.”

So there you have it! I’m still bossy but apparently I’m also the cornerstone of society! I can live with that! I realize that none of this has anything to do with aromatherapy, but not everything has to. There is more to life than essential oils after all. 😀 Going outside to save some worms from uncertain death probably reduces stress as much as using your favourite stress relieving essential oil blend does anyway 😀

Yours in love and aromatics,
Leah

Leah Morgan, CCAP


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