A FRIEND of mine, who has a far greener thumb than I, recently took me on a tour of her backyard in the desert southwest of the US. She pointed out all the varieties of trees, shrubs and grasses she has planted, but one plant in particular caught my attention. She pointed to a shrub with small dark red blossoms on it, and told me that if you give the plant too much water, it doesn’t bloom. It thrives and blossoms under just the right amount of environmental stress.
It reminded me of another story of a butterfly, perched on a window sill, struggling to escape its cocoon. A helpful observer, watching its struggle, decided to gently cut the creature’s cocoon open and free it. When the wet butterfly finally emerged, it was unable to fly because what was intended to be helpful had actually prevented the butterfly from strengthening its wings to prepare it for flight.
Perhaps the stress we experience can be the predictor of beautiful flowers or elegant flight in our own lives. Perhaps if we are patient and stop to be grateful for our experiences, we too, like the plant or the butterfly, will blossom or fly in unexpected ways as a result of the stress, rather than being defeated by it. I’m not saying that stress is always a good thing. I am saying, from first-hand experience, that it’s not always a bad thing either. We need the right amount of tension to keep us ‘blossoming’.
And while we humans are more complex than a plant, we can learn valuable lessons by observing nature.
courtesy: citings / et