by Christy Gualtieri
It’s been a long winter, hasn’t it? It’s sure felt that way. And here we are – nearly three weeks into spring. I hope it’s a wonderful season for you, and just as the earth all around us is renewed with flowers and new growth on the trees, I hope you are, too.
New Year’s Day is famous for being a day of resolutions – a time to clear the calendar, to re-set our minds and bodies and to give ourselves goals for how we’d like to change ourselves over the coming year. It makes sense – a new year, so a new you. But I think that it’s the season of spring, and not New Year’s Day, that offers us more of an opportunity to grow, and to look inside ourselves to find the things we’d like to nurture.
Have you ever noticed things are easier to do with a friend? Let’s say you and someone you’re close to share a similar goal you’d like to attain. You lean on each other for support, check in to see how the other is doing, and what you wanted becomes much easier to attain. The same could apply for us and for Nature. If our goals this year are to rejuvenate ourselves, or to grow emotionally, or to bloom into the person we feel we know we can be, what better friend to have than the world around us? It’s doing the same. And it’s a much more encouraging thing to see progress in April or May than it does in January, when most folks give up their goals in a few weeks anyhow. When you get discouraged, you can remember that spring unfolds over a matter of months, not immediately; when you need encouragement, you can use the visible signs of life that spring offers to help you remember that you are worthy of beauty and of growth, too.
My husband has a huge green thumb, and he’s itching to start building new garden beds for our vegetables this year. He won’t plant anything for a few weeks yet (the most optimal time starting just after the last frost), but he’s starting the process: starting seeds inside, sketching out plans for where the new beds will go, figuring out which seeds will go where once they’re ready to be placed in the ground.
If you have some growing you know you are reading for, be it intellectually, emotionally, or spiritually, that might be a good lesson for us: take the time to prepare yourself, the way the earth is doing now; and once the last frost ends, nurture yourself through the process of growth, the way the ground and the sun nurtures new growth to all that surrounds us. Yes, growing is painful: just as seeds have to die from their current form to become bigger and better, there will be parts of us that will need to die in order to reach where we need to be. But I hope your growth this year is just as beautiful as any plant or animal or flower that we’ve ever seen!
Until next time, be well!
Christy Gualtieri is a freelance writer specializing in pop culture, religion, and motherhood. She lives in Pittsburgh with her husband and son, blogs at asinglehour.wordpress.com, and tweets @agapeflower117. Follow PghPsych on Facebook and Twitter for daily updates, inspirational quotes, articles, and different events and causes related to good mental health!