Meander makes me think of a river. The idea of the river flowing and me sitting watching or drifting along is like life. The river meanders and carries you along if you are not too attached. The river flows fast on the outer edge, slower on the inner edge, much like a human life. The slowing down to the fast business of the outside has to take place in your inner self.
Just like a meandering river can form an Oxbow lake, an oxbow can form in our life. We are sidetracked and stuck off to the side and can no longer go with the flow. The oxbow is the harness of an Ox, shaped like a horseshoe. It collars some water of the river, and in us, it collars and confines us in our own emotional lake. We are still, not by choice but by the outer rush. We are forced to stop, be still, reassess our life and just wait for changes that will allow us to join the flow again.
Life, like the meandering river, has its curves, fast water and still spots. We are carried along, sometimes at a pace we don’t want, and then slowed to a pace we do not want. The curves push us from both sides, gaining excitement in the fast water, and slowing in the inner edge of the river. We are so often surprised at the Oxbow, if formed so quickly. We find this catchment form as quickly in our own lives and we realize what has happened. The sidetrack and stillness is not to be feared, but to be cherished as a calm time, a chance to see what we missed in the fast stream of life. We now can see clearly the variations of life around us, the trees and the forest, the blueness of the sky, and feel the healing touch of the magnificent nature. It is not a stagnant end, change will come, and we will join the flow again.
Float with the river; do not try to change its path. It knows its destination through all meanders and Oxbows even if you do not.