Your Mind is a Garden

I said what I said.

Your mind is a garden. You can fill it up with anything you want. Peonies, hydrangeas, sunflowers, vegetables. And you can rain down sunshine and water and let the flowers bloom.

Or you can weed and weed widely. You can pull things out by the roots so that they never appear again. You can spread mulch so that you never have to weed again.

This is all up to you. You plant the goodness and you root out the evil in your mind.

So if you’re wondering what you can do to help the BLM movement. Think about doing some planting. Or some watering. For the ideas that we need. Or rooting out some bias.

It’s your call.

Love,

Bailey

Bursting All Over

My house is always a sight for sore eyes when I’ve had a long day.

But now that it is spring, all of my mother’s green thumb handiwork looks especially beautiful. (Even though my eyes literally get sore from all of the allergies.) The tulips that stand so tall, their heads bobbing in the breeze. The pansies, huddled and colored together, their little faces turned to the sun. Then there’s the lavender bush with its symmetrical kisses of blossoms whose scent hangs lazily in the humid air. Everything has been waiting so patiently to pop and now that it has happened, it’s as if they couldn’t wait any longer.

Then there’s the redbuds. In great spirals, the pinkish reddish buds climb the branches, grasping bits of sky. From young saplings to sprawling trees, their display becomes more and more beautiful every year.

Of course, they’re pretty trees. And yes, they add some interest to an otherwise normal front lawn. Sure, they offer plenty of shade.

Yet, I never noticed something about them before tonight. When I was walking up to my house, I happened to pass very close to the nearest, lowest branch. I found that instead of shooting out leaves and blossoms in one cluster, the redbud grows flowers everywhere. Even on a long stretch of bark, small little groupings of buds burst out. Just a random crop here and there, wherever it feels like it.

Besides being incredibly adorable because it looks like the tree simply couldn’t contain itself, it is a perfect reminder for us all to look for beauty where you wouldn’t necessarily find it. In order to do that though, you have to start with yourself.

It doesn’t matter how you are supposed to look or be. Growth can be messy. Sometimes it can mean that you change in places you least expect. Sometimes it means that you change all over and become completely unrecognizable. And even sometimes still, you’ll surprise people by changing in leaps and bounds, like my entire yard did. But you’ll just have to trust that the end result will be beautiful, as it is every spring.

Watching Plants Grow

*Recycling an old post* Enjoy!

…is not as boring as you might think.

Now that the weather has hovered slightly higher than freezing for a few days, I’m going to call it: it’s springtime. The sunshine, the light breezes, the soft earth, the green grass; it is here to stay. Which is why we can all take off our mittens and gloves and start to flex our green thumb. What will it be this year? Pansies? Petunias? Portulaca? All of them, if need be!

This winter has been especially hard, so I am especially excited to plant something, but my mom and I always feel this way. My fondest memories are of planting tulip bulbs with her, naming every one so that they would have a better chance at growing. Then when we brought home our Stella, the night-blooming cereus, from my favorite professor, we felt that we had been given the crowning jewel of our garden.

So, why do I love flowers so much? Because they are a lesson in optimism.

Why? Well, have you ever watched a flower grow?

The progress it makes. The heights it reaches. The happiness it provides for others.

But the best part?

How it unyieldingly reaches toward the sun.

Because you can put a flower in a dark room with only the tiniest sliver, the most meager portion of sunlight. And somehow, some way, it has bent completely over backwards to make sure that it is in the path of those rays. Time after time, I have watched my mother’s plants stretch their new shoots toward the sun. So much so that she would have to turn them around so that they would even out, so that they did not become top-heavy from stretching too far to one side.

Now, I know that you are probably already like a flower in many ways. I’m sure you are beautiful. I’m sure you are self-sufficient. I’m sure you have roots. But do you go out of your way to live in the sunshine? Do you do everything you can to make sure that you have what you need to thrive? Do you try to lean into the light even when the darkness surrounds you?

If you don’t, plant a flower this springtime. Let it be your daily reminder. And if you need a serious push, try a cactus. Despite their prickly exterior, they need the most light of all and the least amount of care. (And if you don’t think that’s the best metaphor ever for people in general, then you can leaf.)