Recently, I was asked to care for an orchid because my partner received it as a gift and was worried he would kill it.
I was happy to take on the task and began to research this beautiful creature. I knelt near it often plucking frazzled blooms, one-by-one, as they finished their attractive lives. When the stems reached up barren, I noticed the tops whither as if the plant was retracting its sentiments … kind of like a lover does after a breakup.
I believe that, when we allow connection, plants and animals communicate with us, and if we sit quietly near them they will explain what they need. So I not only view the time that I hover around the orchid as a bland observation period but also a time that I am picking up some kind of signal that will fully develop when I am in the shower or as a thought in the middle of the night.
In this case, I was guided to research.
I read that the best thing to do would be to cut the stems near the base and sprinkle the wounds with cinnamon so the plant would not become infected.
Youtube searching, I found a video of a woman doing this. An "old pro," she puttered around pots of the tropical specimen and matter-of-factly explained that when the stems are cut, the plant has more energy to direct to a new leaf or another stem. In time, the flowers of a pruned orchid will grow stronger, with more plentiful flowers.
My mind exploded in metaphor.
It’s so much like our lives right now. Social media, including examples of how everyone is doing everything and having the most fun time ever, tempts us to cast our energy in all kinds of directions, to be the best at everything.
But in the end, we all know deep down that our energy bank is limited. No matter how many coffees you drink, you have an account. How and where will you spend it?
It’s springtime. Time to clean. Time to declutter.
Time for this blogpost.
Where in your life are the dead ends?
Admit them as they are, and see what happens if you cut them off.
I could have left those stems on the orchid to gradually dry and break off while it struggled to retract its energy, or I could, as I did, clip them and cover their pain in cinnamon so that the plant’s life force and future activity is stronger.
It’s been two weeks and I see a new leaf shooting up through the middle of the plant. It’s slow, steady, beautiful, just like the little moments of our lives that build upon themselves.
It's your life, it's my life--happy gardening!