“Everything you were looking for was right there with you all along.” — The Wizard of Oz
It’s finally here. Spring. After many false alarms, this finally feels like the real thing. The anticipation is high for me this year, and I’m not quite sure why. It’s not that spring is my favorite season, that slot belongs to autumn. Something about autumn: the colors, the sight of the leaves falling from their homes and then the sound as they crunch beneath my feet, the crispness and coolness of the air as a reprieve from the heat of the summer months. But spring — there’s a hope to spring that I always seem to forget until it’s right in front of me again.
Earlier this week I was rushing out of my house on the way to work. When I arrived at the front step I was caught off guard by the purple flowers at the bottom of the stairs that seemed to have bloomed overnight. They spilled out under our fence towards the sidewalk. Below them, out of the cracks in the sidewalk two dandelions had come up as well. The sight was so beautiful, these flowers that had been planted here intentionally but spread beyond their original home intermingled with these beautiful weeds that came up uninvited.
Together these flowers shared this common space and as I walked off to get to work I thought about how different things can share space in our lives, things planned and unplanned: a child, a job, a relationship. I thought about how when you stop trying to create the perfect visual and let things unfold, sometimes it turns out messier but even more beautiful than expected. I made a mental note to myself that when I got home from work that day I would take a picture of those flowers to remind myself of these things later. When I returned back to my front steps, however, someone had plucked the two dandelion stems and all that remained were the planted purple flowers from our yard. That in itself is probably another lesson, but one I haven’t quite figured out or verbalized yet. But even without a photo to document that it existed, I still have this memory in my mind that calls back to me.
I hope to pass on to my daughters all the lessons that flowers teach us: lay roots, grow towards the light, be bold and colorful. Welcome the unplanned things that come up from the cracks. Reach beyond your comfort zone, your boundaries, your fences. Mix with and learn from those who are different from you. It’s good for life to have seasons; some seasons are for letting go and others are for blossoming.
Dearest Noelani and Niara, when you look at your life and how wonderful it is, I hope you discover what I have known all along… you started as a small seed, but even now, every good thing you hope for is already present inside of you, if you only give it time and space to bloom. You are wisdom and beauty and love and happiness and courage. You are the most perfect flower, a rare sight, the sweetest fruit.