Finding Hope #4
"Where flowers bloom so does hope."
-Lady Bird Johnson
I'm feeling a little guilty sitting down to write in the blog tonight. I have much to do besides writing but this seems to be calling to me today. Today has been spent mostly outdoors today taking care of the chickens, getting Harold the rooster comfy in his new home down by the ladies, turning the compost pile, and just enjoying the beautiful day.
Really today was filled with caring for some of the things I'm most grateful besides my family and friends. I love my little chickens and Harold the rooster. I took the cat to the vet today and I also cared for my little plants that are growing in my basement. I love the time I get to spend with each of these things I care for.
When I was sick during my pregnancy I spent a lot of the time on the floor. I'm not sure why but the floor made me less sick. While laying on the floor next to my bed the cat was always right next to me. She let me pet her and honestly just having another living person sit with me was a comfort. It's like I wasn't alone in my suffering. Then when I lost my baby the moment I would start crying, whether it be silent tears or great heaving sobs she would be there. She'd sit right by me. She would meow and lay down beside me as I cried. She was there, every time.
Now she is still always by my side. As we've been stuck in the house she's always right by me unless she is up in her cat tour avoiding the kids. She'll sit with me at night, she'll sit in a chair next to me while I'me eating and she'll sit on a stool while I'm make breakfast, lunch or dinner. I love her, and I'm so grateful to have my emotional support cat. My cat has a weird genetic thing where she gets holes in her teeth and so she's had a great deal of her teeth pulled and she's only 6 years old. Nick commented today that soon I'll need to feed her with a syringe and in my brain I thought I would totally do that because she's been my best friend through it all.
I love my chickens because they are where I go when I need a laugh. Something to cheer me up. Chickens are hilarious. They are curious and they have such silly personalities. They are all so different. I have 12 chickens and I can tell you funny things about each one. I have two that honk like geese, I have one that spins when it's stressed. I have another that shows up on my deck looking for treats even after I've clipped her wings and locked her in the coop. I have one that follows me around the coop clucking at me in disapproval if I don't feed her. I have another that always pecks Nick's feet when he comes in the coop. To watch them all together is one of my favorite things.
When I was really depressed after losing my baby Hope I walked down to the coop. It took a lot out of me but I was desperate for that moment of cheerfulness. Unfortunately because I was so depressed I wasn't able to find joy in their presence and I was able to realize how depressed I was. For me they were my emotional wellness sign. I wasn't okay because I didn't find their antics funny. They didn't bring me joy.
I started growing some plants a couple weeks ago. Hannah and I planted all the seeds and we've been going down everyday to see how they've been growing. I love watching through Hannah's eyes how excited she gets every time a new little plant pops up out of the soil. I have to say I get pretty excited too. It's amazing that from a small seed you can grow amazing plants. My first year I planted a garden I got carried away and planted a ton of tomatoes but I wish I had taken pictures of the garden at the end of the season. And it all came from these tiny little seeds that I planted. Growing plants really does take hope. There was another quote I loved that said, "to plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow." It's true. Planting these little seeds makes me excited about the future. Which is pretty big right now.
This year I'm growing a bunch of flowers to remember my Hope. I still have a lot of vegetables and herbs I'm growing but I'm really looking forward to walking out my front door and seeing beautiful flowers. Planting flowers gives me hope. Hope for tomorrow. Hope that there will be beauty in the world.
Tonight I'm just feeling really grateful for the animals, the plants, and nature around me. There is beauty everywhere you look. I live in a desert and there is still beauty in it. Strangely the horrible weeds I fight each year have beautiful flowers in the spring and during the fall they turn beautiful colors too. I think that you can learn from that. Even in the weeds of your life, you can find beauty. One of Hannah's favorite plants is a rose bush. Roses are beautiful but they also have thorns.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that even now, when things are scary and uncertain you can find beauty. When things are difficult and painful and thorny, you can find beauty. You can find hope. And I think in a way it makes those beautiful parts more beautiful. You appreciate them more because of their thorns or their briars. I'm not sure I'm describing it quite the way that I want but I just encourage you to try and find beauty in what we are going through. Find the beautiful flowers. Find the silliness in watching a bunch of chickens. Find the comfort in the purr of a cat. Or find those things that make you happy and spend time with them. I know at times like these I'm extremely grateful for those things that bring me joy and I feel blessed that I have them in my life.