Guillermina is Finding Balance

Guillermina is going through the natural process of finding out what life will be like without her mother. At the moment that means lots of explorations – both of the space around her and of her relationships with the others. She may be searching for a deeper connection with herself emotionally and a sense of what each new day will bring. 

Part of those explorations can bring up old habits, like sharing food with others who may not welcome that interaction. Guille is navigating boundaries with Mara and Rana at times, but all moments can be teachable within a herd setting. It’s normal for some of her days to be tougher than others, but there are plenty of opportunities for Guille’s sweet side to shine through. For instance, today she was eating along the fence line with Maia and Bambi, and the three were side-by-side-by-side. The interaction was very soft, gentle, and sweet. In this moment it seemed that Guille was not searching for anything, and completely grounded in a caring and calm moment with two elephants who were there to simply be with her. These are the types of subtle, quiet communications that are helping her define what life can be like in the future. Even when Guille may be more introspective, she is reaching out to experience moments of sincere peacefulness, seeking the balance between what is and what will be. 

Photo of Guillermina


  1. REPLY
    Pam says

    One of my favorite things about ESB and these posts is that you share not only the facts, but also what you observe on more subtle levels. Thank you for sharing your perceptions of what’s going on internally for Guille and for all the girls.

  2. REPLY
    Melinda says

    I love reading that Guille is adjusting to life without mom. I’m sure there are emotionally tough days, but the girls are pulling her through. Thanks for sharing this very hopeful news.

  3. REPLY
    Barb says

    Incredibly thoughtful comments and dare I say, poetic.

  4. REPLY
    Debbie Sides says

    Bless her and so thankful for the other girls to help her through this process.

  5. REPLY
    Sandy says

    So sad, but Guille is so lucky to be at Sanctuary with her caregivers and elephant family. Any news yet on what caused Pocha’s death?

    • REPLY
      Sara says

      We are still waiting to hear from the independent organization that is doing the testing. As soon as we know more, we will report.

  6. REPLY
    Julie says

    Awesome description of Ellie-zen! I also love this pic of Guille. From this pic it looks like she’s very close to sanctuary weight. Does the pic represent what’s really going on with her weight?

    • REPLY
      Sara says

      She’s getting slimmer, but isn’t quite there yet.

  7. REPLY
    Carmen Dalziel says

    I usually appreciate your updates but come on – Guille is GRIEVING, and you’re seeing moments of that in various ways. Let’s not sugar coat things. It’s obvious she’s acting out in her sorrow and maybe even abandonment longing for her Mother by resorting back to old habits she did with Pocha . It’s not sunshine and rainbows these days for her

    • REPLY
      Sara says

      It certainly is not sunshine and rainbows. But Guille is not a “bad” elephant and we need to make sure people know that. She’s not acting out in harmful ways. She’s taking her grief a day at a time, as should be expected and the other elephants are helping her adapt in the best ways they know how.

  8. REPLY
    María Elizabeth Alvarez says

    Thank you so much.

  9. REPLY
    Julie says

    Last day to buy a t-shirt. I see the goal has not been reached. It’s a great looking shirt!

    • REPLY
      Sara says

      We met our goal and extended it! We love the shirt and hope others do, too.

  10. REPLY
    Wen says

    It was a blessing that both Poocha and Guillermina were moved to the sanctuary when they were so Guillermina was not left alone, which would have been devastating for her with no support around her.

  11. REPLY
    Susy says

    Gracias Sara por contarnos el estado de Guille. Es obvio que habrán días buenos y otro no tanto. Lo importante es que está con otros, en un lugar verde, al aire libre y eso ayuda. La ausencia de mamá Pocha no será fácil de sobrellevar, pasara un tiempo y tal vez el resto de su vida, porque vivieron muy juntas por muchos años. Agradezco que lean y escuchen nuestros pedidos, cómo así también respondan a las dudas. Continuamos esperando necropsia. Un abrazo enorme. Los quiero

    • REPLY
      Sara says

      Thank you. All of us here are waiting with you and hoping to hear something soon.

  12. REPLY
    Wim says

    Beautiful picture. May you find peace and balance within the gracious herd.

  13. REPLY
    Susy says

    Gracias Sara..que bonitas palabras. Gracias porque nos hacen sentir parte de ustedes parte del lugar que albergó a dos seres que amamos muchísimo acá en Mendoza. Un abrazo Sara

  14. REPLY
    Bonnie says

    Guille will be ok she has to deal with things in her own way Elephants are smarter than people may think would she have survived were she was before know buddy knows for sure maybe just maybe she is having a hard time she has her Auntie’s they will help her and let’s try to reply to answering about an update in a friendly manner

  15. REPLY
    Carey says

    I wonder what she’d make of her Dad being there now, it is said he was sweet with her. Are people working with Tamy and keeping him in half way reasonable spirits after his loss?

    • REPLY
      Sara says

      We don’t know if Tamy can sense that anything has happened or not. It’s possible that he does, but impossible to be sure of.

  16. REPLY
    LIliana says

    Gracias, Sara, por comentar en forma tan clara y completa la evolución del duelo de la dulce Guille.
    Desde que me enteré de la muerte de Pocha tuve la secreta convicción de que ella esperó a ver a su hija libre en un habitat hermoso y rodeada de sus congéneres para pasar a otro plano. Una MADRAZA que sintió que su misión maternal había terminado.

  17. REPLY
    Tammy says

    Bless her heart🙏 losing a loved one isn’t easy for humans to understand and cope with but being an elephant going through all these drastic changes in such a short amount of time is unbelievable for her but she’s got the best of both worlds to help navigate through these rough waters and so far from what I see she’s doing better than expected of course being young helps too. Thank you for being there for our girls we love them we love you all too and Ingo this includes you too! Big hugs to all 💞🐘💞

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