Thursday, October 24, 2013

Garden of Gratitude

I am a gardener at heart. I love to walk outside, identify trees and plants. I love to look at the similarities and differences in the plants as I stroll by. I love to plants seedlings or seeds and watch as they grow and transform.

In gardening, I sometimes look at a plant and have to determine what it needs. It grows slowly, has a pale color, and hasn’t bloomed. 

It’s the same with people. Sometimes we need supplemental strength, encouragement in order to grow better and stronger. Sometime we lose our way and we need someone to again show us the light.

Sunlight: shine on their successes, no matter how small. Adjust the sunlight according to the size of the accomplishment. We all want to be appreciated-do it often and sincerely.

I have often thought about how each of us plants seeds every day: we share ideas, disappointments, concerns, frustrations. We also receive seeds from others in the form of comments, suggestions, and concerns.
Rocks in the garden: obstacles that are difficult to move around and sometimes are deeper than we think.

Several years ago now, I realized that I planted “weeds” instead of seeds sometimes unknowingly. Fortunately, my love of gardening has brought me to this place. Many times, I thought I was nurturing my kids, making them stronger. Instead, I sometimes fed them too much in the way of criticism, scolding, negative comments and sometimes I found myself walking past my little flowers without seeing them as they were-seeking shelter, needing a warm, caring heart to hold them until they found the inner strength to stand on their own. There were times I protected them too much from the weather. They couldn’t develop the strength to weather the storm. I prevented them from developing their own “root” system.

Raising children reminds me of a 7th grade science experiment where we had to take 5 similar plants. We put one in sunlight with no water, one in darkness with no water, one in sunlight with water, one in darkness with water and one in a stable environment with sunlight, darkness, water and fertilizer. We studied the effects of the different environments on the health of the plant. We recorded our observations every day for two weeks. At the end of the 2 weeks, we had to draw conclusions about the effects of the environment on these plants. The one that received a variety of nurturing was the healthiest and despite the sometimes harsh or infertile environments, some of the other plants survived but were weakened and ripe for disease.

Mary, Mary
Quite Contrary
How does YOUR garden grow?

To a Bountiful Harvest,

Coach Renee  

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