My bulbs went in late in the planting season this past fall. I think I was too busy being busy and too busy being anxious when I was supposed to plant them, and then suddenly I wanted to lean into the hope of spring and it was almost too late. Right before Thanksgiving, I crammed them into two planter boxes on our back deck and hoped for the best.
I told my spiritual director I'd planted them as a nod to hope and trust and all that, and then before I saw her a month later, dirt was scattered on our deck and there were suspicious looking holes in the planter boxes. Upon closer inspection, I saw that bulbs had been pulled out; some were gnawed on, some gone altogether. I took that as a sign, at first not a good one. The messiness, the chaos, the half-baked attempt at something beautiful...it was all in line with my life at the time. Of course these "seeds" weren't working out as I'd hoped and anticipated--neither was much else in my life!
Then, as I dug deeper (sorry) with my spiritual director and we talked about the strategic squirrels running around mucking things up in my springtime flower plan, it hit me: maybe they needed those bulbs more than I did. Maybe my last-minute decision to plant those bulbs was just what those squirrels needed to get them through the winter. Maybe I...my life...my work...my energy...was feeding someone who needed feeding. That insight changed everything for me and I let go of feeling frustrated and annoyed with the squirrels and I quit checking the flower boxes every day to see what damage they'd wrought.
Since then, I've leaned full force into the mystery of what green stems might pop up in the next month or so and what yellow flowers might bloom after that. I'm waiting to see what the dirt and fallen leaves and winter rain and bright sun have produced and what the squirrels left behind, if anything. And if they haven't, oh well...I count myself lucky that I was a small part of their care and feeding in this season of cold and hibernation.
What about you? Who or what's feeding you, or who are you feeding that might need your energy and goodness even more than you do?
In honor of this new year and an idea I've had brewing for awhile (not to mention bringing great people together for meaningful conversation!), I'm offering this workshop. If you or someone you know is interested, please email or call me for more information or to register.
Long ago I was an English major. Though some may say my degree has been under-utilized, my love for the written word remains, and sometimes my words turn out okay.