Late Bloomer

Mar 24, 2021



In early February, I wrote about my excitement over our Japanese magnolia blooms when there was only one open flower on the tree.  Our tree was very late to blossom.  On our walks through the neighborhood, we saw all the other trees in full color, many already shedding their petals, covering the ground in a carpet of pinks.  I didn't mind waiting for ours... I could tell it was going to be magnificent.  On February 15, winter weather arrived in Houston paralyzing our city with unprecedented low temperatures.  Even with valiant efforts to cloak the landscaping with bed sheets and insulators, nothing delicate survived.  All the Japanese magnolias that had bloomed were now covered in sad, crinkly brown wilt.  About a week after the freeze, our tree started to open up.  The extra time in incubation protected many of the buds and the color was a welcome reprieve from the dead all around.  Before the freeze, this tree had so much potential.  Thousands of green buds were ready for the big spring show!  Many many didn't get their chance to shine because they were just open enough to be vulnerable to the effects of the cold.  The ones that did make it though, were so dainty, delicate, and lovely, and such a contrast to the bleak landscape all around.

Have you ever felt that you're a bit of a late bloomer?  Have you ever thought you should be farther along than you actually are?  Once you did 'bloom' did you feel it wasn't quite enough?  I know I've felt that way.  What if the truth is, you're not supposed to be any farther along than you are?  What if you could show up exactly as you are -  completely unexpected and weathered and beautiful and fragile and colorful and that's enough?  Our growth can be interrupted.  'Potential' can trick us into expecting more of ourselves than what is 'actual.'  This tree was never going to be more than what it is.  It can't will itself to be more.  It just IS.  We are so capable of accepting this when we see it in nature.  We don't spend a lot of time fretting over the way the tree shows up.  We are also very compassionate with our pets in this way.  But when it comes to HUMAN nature... we want to live up to our potential - and we want all of our people to do the same.  But how would it be different if we accepted ourselves exactly the way we are?   I just AM.  You just ARE.  You are never supposed to be MORE.  There's a world of freedom in that.

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