When the winter comes and freezing temperatures are the norm and snow is either blanketing the ground or a breath away...it is time to bring my potted plants in for the season. For the first year I can remember, nearly all of my plants are alive. (I cannot, for the life of me, keep a Basil plant alive.) But, that's not what I thought when I'd first brought the plants indoors.
I thought that, not only had the basil died, but the mint and oregano had died, too. The pots were full of brown, dead limbs, and the few spots of green were quickly fading. I was sure that I was going to spend my winter with my cactus, my rosemary, my sage (that seems like it wants to die every other day and then springs back to life), my lavender, and my little chamomile plant that died but had suddenly sprung back a few weeks ago.
These limbs, though, this pile of twigs and dead leaves that were shedding all over my floor...these made me a bit upset. I had devoted time to these plants. Didn't they know? Didn't they know how much I wanted them to live and grow and enrich my life as I took care of them? Couldn't I do something right?
It's not that I made some huge deal over the dead plants. I'd gotten used to killing them. In fact, I keep a store of pots in my garage that start off full of green, growing things in the spring and end up empty and back on the shelf by sometime mid-fall. Something came over me this time. They weren't dead, or, at least, I wasn't accepting it.
With kitchen shears and an hour of pruning back tough limbs and carefully maneuvering around green spots, I was able to cut away the dead, twisted limbs. The parts that were gone and were not coming back. I had a trash bag full of sticky, crisp, sweet smelling mint husks and twisty oregano twigs. I scooped away the fallen leaves and other dead muck that had fallen to the soil...and I found them. Little dots of green. Little dots of fresh, new life.
I know this is sappy, and it's an obvious metaphor, but I truly feel that I'm one of those little dots. Maybe several. It's been a long summer. It's been hot and sweaty and nerve-wracking and upsetting, but I've been able to cut away a good bit of filth and realize what is dead and needs to be gotten rid of. It's been just a few days, but with oxygen and water and unobstructed light those little plants have shot up and are as green and verdant as ever.
I hope I thrive as well.
Love and Lyte,