Learning patience

“Oh look, your favorite tree, and it’s full of fruit!” my friend exclaimed as we got out of the car at our Russian River destination. I had told her on the drive up how obsessed I was with figs, and how happy I was that it was finally fig season. I went over to look where she was pointing, but my excitement waned as I realized that all the figs that covered this tree like christmas ornaments were still too green to eat. Not a single ripe one. In a few weeks they would all be ripe for the picking, but alas I was too early. As I stared at one of the green bulbs that seemed to mock me, my disappointment dissipated into amusement as I realized that I was once again being faced with the lesson that was front and center in my life right now: patience. From my career to relationship to digestive health, I had been cultivating tender sprouts for a healthy blossoming, but none had yet to show their bright petals. Instead of appreciating the small (or in some cases large) steps I had made in each of those departments, I tend to get restless and internally throw a fit, like a small child wanting ice-cream “noooow”.

I guess a large part of my anxiety stems from the fear that no flowers will actually bloom, that all my work in cultivating fruitful areas of my life will fail, leaving me not only barren and exhausted but also cynical. Because in the end, there is no guarantee that fruits from our labor will actually ripen and make it to our mouths. There could be a drought, a plant plague, or some thieving animals that will squander all your hard work. In order to not go mad over the risks, it is necessary to have trust and faith that the fruit will in fact come. One needs to detach from the needless worry, and surrender to what will be. Water the plant, give it your love and best intentions, but then let go. You may find that all that positive energy you’ve directed to your sprout will actually encourage it to push through and bloom even more beautifully than you imagined.

At least, this is what I’m telling myself right now. Only time will tell for sure. Until then, I am doing my darndest to wade patiently in the unknown and appreciate my seedlings.

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