In my garden is a hydrangea bush that is blooming beautiful purple lilac flowers for the first time in its four-year lifespan. What a life it’s been thus far. I have to confess I’ve been the cause of much of its suffering.
First I planted the young hydrangea bush at my workshop entrance but it was too hot in the summer. Then I transplanted it to the other side of the garden and it was still withering; together with my rather too enthusiastic pruning. I tried one year under the cherry tree and it couldn’t compete with the large moisture-sucking giant and almost dehydrated.
I dug a hole and placed it in a colorful porcelain pot but that was uncomfortable as well. Finally I found a place alongside a large old tree stump totally covered in ivy. In the past year it has been protected in the shadow of the ivy and now at last in rain and sunshine I can hear its cries of delight as blossom after blossom bursts forth and sets that corner of the garden ablaze. The big unshapely ivy clump never blooms it just grows green and shaggy. But I have a suspicion it is delighted that the little neighbor who took up residence next door is thriving all because it needed protection from the sun and it could oblige.
Makes me think of how we can bless others in the most unexpected ways, sharing our shade for them to bloom. I want my life to be surrounded by people who find encouragement in proximity to me, who can shelter in the shadow my ungainly figure casts, who will be protected from harm, and who discover that I delight in their blooming with gifts and colors I can never hope to bring forth myself. Together in the garden we are a stunning combination…. no need to compete for attention, just be and become…..