I’ve never been much of a gardener, but I enjoy believing that I, in fact, have that amazing gift where anything that I plant in the ground will grow into the most amazingly beautiful, large, colorful plant that anyone has seen.
This could be partially because I never have more than a window box or a few containers and brightly colored flower pots to make the horticulture attempt. This year began with a few interesting looking flowers, some basil, sage and cilantro. Much to my surprise, I learned that cilantro doesn’t particularly like the hot summers of Nashville, so that particular model died and fast, crispy death.
The sage followed suit, but I’m not sure what I was thinking planting sage in the summer, because I don’t really make anything during the summer that warrants sage as an ingredient.
(My dad is a teeny bit obsessed with cooking during the holidays, and he taught me how to make his age old, tried-and-true stuffing. It starts the night before with the ceremonial drying of the bread, followed by a morning filled with chopping celery and onions, a heap of sage and lots and lots of butter. Seriously, this sage stuffing can kick your stuffing’s ass…just being honest.)
At some point during the summer, I was at the Home Depot and noticed a sale on a few plants. One being some sort of a vine-like plant with purple flowers that appeared to have had a hard childhood. My nurturing nature was in full gear and I bought the little plant for $3, bound and determined to bring it back to it’s glorious early self. I wanted it to awaken its little plant soul and have it become confident enough to explode into a wave of color.
Well, it didn’t.
I need to give my little porchmate credit – I travel a lot. I don’t really know how to do things like “pruning” and I’m a little bit sketchy on the “watering” part as well.
A few other plants have died and started over on their own, and often I think that I should replant them in a larger container – the obvious choice being the home of this purple plant.
However I just can’t bring myself to do it, for even in it’s dried out desert, there is still little glimmers of life. Take today for example. Amidst all of the branches that have been dormant all summer, consistently there are one or two beautiful, colorful blooms that adorn my porch. And these little glimpses are just enough to make me want to cheer on that little plant just a week or two longer.
Maybe I can just relate. Maybe this plant is showing me that there is always hope, always life in the world around me. No matter how dire the situation, there’s always the chance to see life start anew.
No matter how messed up someone’s life may seem, I am still required to look for the best, to cheer on the positive in their lives.
Maybe it’s a show that even a little bit of color can change your whole outlook.
Maybe this is a reminder to me of days past where I felt like my situation was broken and beyond the help of God, but in the end, his promises are always honest, and his mercy is great.
Maybe it’s a metaphor for the state of our world today, a reminder of the positive work that is happening when it comes to the world’s atrocities like genocide and trafficking.
Or maybe it’s just proof that I’m simply a really bad gardener and this makes me feel better about not fostering this poor plant out to some loving, green thumber at a local plant rescue.
No matter what, I’m still keeping the plant, and maybe giving it a little more attention, some plant food and some extra love. Maybe over the next few days I’ll see a few people or situations that look a little like this plant as well, and I’ll take the time to give them a little nurturing as well.