I used to walk by this garden every day on my way to New York for grad school. There were days that I would rush past it without a second glance and then there were days that something compelled me to stop. Maybe it was the old woman that I would sometimes see tending to the flowers. Her touch was so gentle and it seemed so out of place in my rush to get to the city for class and internship. It was also the colors – they were so vibrant – the mixture was mesmerizing and there were days, certain days, where I would leave a little early just to have an extra minute or two to admire them.
The other day I came across this picture on my computer and I was reminded of that feeling. The feeling of the sun hitting my face – rays beaming sharply down with purpose – helping me rise to the day ahead. The feeling of the cool spring breeze lifting my hair from my shoulders and helping the aromas dance playfully around me – pulling me closer into them.
Time is a marker of change for many. It is what we can look back on, chronologize our lives in steps and patterns of behavior – things we’ve done, goals we’ve achieved. That picture was taken anywhere between 2012-2014, I don’t know when, I couldn’t tell you, somewhere in there by a young woman with passion. Someone who carried around a notebook everywhere she went – who wrote smashed against subway doors, standing on buses, and if I am being truthful when no one was watching at work. The years have passed and I have forgotten to take time. I have forgotten to stop and see the flowers –to feel the warmth of the sun – to smell their sweet aromas as they mix around me.
I don’t pass this particular garden anymore. I do not know if the old woman who used to smile and nod to me even still lives there, but flowers have a way of marking time for me. I look at them with earnest and zest because although they too can be forgotten, left unnoticed, and wither, it only takes care to bring them back – patience to continuously feed them and space for their roots to take hold again. They never really die – and neither do our passions. Flowers remind me of the need to keep watering myself – to shower my passions – to give myself time to soak in the sun and let my roots work their magic on the earth.
What do you need to remember to water in your life?