It was wet and windy today, although thankfully not cold. Funny how, after the wettest winter for fifty years, I was already thinking we needed more rain - the ground was quickly drying out.
Anyway, here are a few of my observations from nature, some a few months old, but still meaningful I think.
Have you ever noticed the trees in winter? Naked, lacy, elegant. I've been admiring them quite a bit, not just because they look beautiful, but because lately I've been struggling with a constant sense of failure. I don't like myself as a person, I can only see my faults and failings, and my strengths seem few. Strip away the bravado and masks and bluff and there I am, fragile and frail, and so far from who I want to be*. I hide myself so people don't see all the muck. (I also forget to see the good, but that's another story)
I look at the trees in winter, and their restfulness whispers to me of how I could be. They are stripped bare, naked for the world, and do they try and hide their true being? No. They stand there, noble and strong, and at peace with themselves. I want that. An escape from the striving to be someone I am not. To be at peace with myself and my foibles. The strength to love myself the way I am and stand boldly as I am. Because in truth, I am as beautiful as a tree in winter, if only I could see it.
Then there's the flowers. The cherry trees were blossoming like crazy a few weeks ago. Now it's rhododendrons splashing around their colour extravagantly, sprinkling cheer wherever they are. Those flowers are pretty amazing really. They look fragile and delicate, as if they might easily break. And they might - it's not hard to crush a bloom. Yet as strong winds buffet them, they bob around, tighten their grip on their plant, and remain attached. Fragile but tough. You have to admire them! Wish that I could be a cherry blossom, tossed around but not destroyed by circumstance. Shaken but not undone.
Nature's life lessons in my own backyard! Now I just need to work them into my heart and let myself be transformed into a woman at peace with herself, who stands strong through life's ups and downs.
* Nichole Nordeman, Even Then