Tiny Box Turtles

Sometimes nature is my best inspiration. We have a cabin out at the lake that is fondly named “Sweet BombDiggity” and it is my happy place in nature. It grounds, relaxes, and feeds my soul. Each time I am there, I am gifted with visuals that leave me in awe. Last weekend my gift was meeting a tiny baby box turtle that we named “Nugget.”

It wasn’t actually a relaxation day at the lake, but rather a sweaty, exhausting, weeding, and work day. My hubby was weed-eating and flipped a small rock. A quarter-sized box turtle was nestled under that rock and he was pulled back in his shell as if the world was about to end!

So many questions! How did he get there? How does something that tiny survive? Where is his family? What do turtles even eat? Now what?

A flurry of googling and visits to wildlife sites explained why our new friend didn’t want cucumber but was very excited about the wayward earthworm that made his way in front of his beak (pure carnage!) It also told us to put him right back where we found him because apparently, if you remove a turtle from their known area they can get confused and don’t know how to find their food supply. Oh no!

By the afternoon, Nugget was very comfortable with us and walked about confidently and without fear (I think it was the earthworm). We placed him back under the rock, said a little prayer, left him a few extra earthworms for later, and let nature be nature.

I am happy to report that he still seems to be happy and healthy and right in the area that I left him. So, no tiny turtles were harmed in the writing of this blog post. I may have also left him some new worms nearby (and a strawberry for a more balanced meal).

Alllllll of this to offer a little bit of tiny turtle inspiration. Life is tough sometimes! I want to have resilience like Nugget. A tough shell, but an openness to connect with people and the world. Opportunities can be huge and scary, but I want to have an ineffable belief that I will always overcome anything that is in my way. And if I’m lucky, I might also find a guardian angel that leaves me chocolate or strawberries (I’ll pass on the earthworms).

Get out of your shell! Sometimes the tiny turtle gets the worm! (Be honest, who knew that they ate worms anyway?!)

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