Fall, Root, Rise, BLOOM!
It was early January in a bookstore in Sacramento, California that I came across The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur. What was printed on the back cover of this book brought me to tears:
"This is the recipe of life
Said my mother
As she held me in her arms as I wept
Think of those flowers you plant
In the garden each year
They will teach you
That people too
In order to bloom"
- Rupi Kaur
At first tears fell from the pain of a broken heart and the familiarity of being held safely in my mother’s arms for comfort. Then those tears became an emotional outpouring of relief that I was not alone and that just maybe, there is a blossoming to come from my struggle.
Since that day I’ve repeated the pattern several times until I could get it right: Wilt, fall, root, rise, bloom. Wilt, fall, root, rise, bloom. No one says there is a straight line in healing or in life: Wilt, fall… Rise, fall… fall… fall… Rise… Wilt… RISE, BLOOM...
What we know from spiritual teachers is that there is no growth without struggle.
Buddhism tells us that we are all like the lotus flower. Lotus flowers grow from mud and muck, slowly emerging toward the surface, through murky waters and into a full beautiful bloom. The lotus flower is a fitting symbol of the hardships and difficulties we must endure in life in order to reach our truest potential. We grow through our experiences and difficulties, learning lessons along the way, overcoming obstacles and adversity. Just as the petals of the lotus unfold, so do we rise from murky waters to flower into something beautiful. It is said that the more muddy and opaque the water, the more beautiful the flower once it emerges.
Going into Easter, believers are reminded of the suffering, unimaginable pain, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus. When Jesus rose on Easter morning, he taught us to trust that through struggle and sacrifice we are essentially capable of coming back to life. The lesson we can learn is to trust in our struggle, lean in, and if we do the work we can gain a higher awareness of ourselves than before. Equally as meaningful are the Seven Sorrows of Mary, the Mother of Jesus. Mary willingly supports the path of her son. Mary must have felt great love and great strength to allow her son to live out his purpose even though she knew he would suffer greatly doing so. It's a gift to be lucky enough to have someone in our corner ready to say, “Ok. I know this is a great struggle. It is happening. We weren’t expecting it (or maybe we were). I am here for you. Let’s get to work, endure, and rebuild because I believe in you and I love you greatly.”
The blossoming illustrated to us by Buddhism and the story of the crucifixion, are not guarantees or predictors of our own passive development. Growth doesn’t just happen as if by accident. For humans who are constantly changing and adapting, erring and falling, we need to always reflect on our capacity for growth and ask ourselves, “How have I contributed to my own suffering? Have I made my growth a priority? Have I reflected on myself and my beliefs and what have I learned? What can I do better for myself in order to reach the fullness that I seek?”
In my own life, I have reflected on the ways I’ve wilted and fallen. I’ve allowed myself forgiveness for my mistakes and given myself permission to live in the present moment. This reflection has opened my heart to my capacity to root, rise, and bloom. It can be hard to be compassionate, patient, and forgiving with myself while I learn to navigate my path toward full bloom, however those elements of self-love and self-respect are essential for achieving my own full-heart and authentic self.
Today I can confidently say that by acknowledging my struggles, reflecting, and working on myself that I love myself more fully than I ever have before. I feel as though I have found my soul again and allowed my heart the capacity to grow and accept the obstacles that may present themselves along my journey. I can trust myself again and truly accept my hearts’ desires to be a loving partner, daughter, sister, friend, coach, and human being.
If you have ever felt that your struggle overwhelmed you and there was no light at the end of the tunnel, you are not alone. If you need someone in your corner to guide you through the obstacles and who knows what you are going through, I am here for you. I can help you to love yourself more fully. Click here for a consultation and find out if my coaching is right for you.
How I connected to my inner child and reconnected with true, carefree fun with real-life Mario Kart :)