"You were designed for accomplishment,
engineered for success, and endowed with the
seeds of greatness." ---Zig Ziglar
Happiness is knowing that Calloway's Nursery in Flower Mound is apparently considered "Essential Services," because they were open yesterday, I stopped in to buy some new plants. I chose mostly perennials over annuals because they were created for a long or indefinite period of time. However, I did pick some annuals too for immediate gratification.
After planting my flowers and turning on the sprinkler system, I noticed a mother and her two young daughters gather around the flowers I planted on the front lawn. As I kept my distance standing by my garage door, I had meaningful conversations with the mom about children, flowers, and life in general. I find flowers brings out the best in people, and although the debate is still up about whether or not the practice of Real Estate is considered "essential services," I must concur, planting seeds to last indefinitely is more than essential, it's a necessity. Stay tuned for photos of my new spring garden.
Resilience. I wondered how my daughter is adapting to her new way of life as a virtual teacher in responses to the Coronavirus. As someone who is extroverted and thrives on positive interactions with her students, she let me know she's doing great and enjoys doing what she loves most - teaching. As a mother, it is good news to learn that she and her colleagues can bounce back with strength from global setbacks and professional crises that helps them to teach their students in order to succeed, one must be resilient.
Empathy. In a recent blog post, I mentioned my role as a Girl Scout Leader many years ago. I thought about the girls and the time I helped them to achieve their badges on Historical Preservation. One of our activities was to find someone from the community who could take our troop on an excursion to learn about our communities past. From the meeting hall, to the farmer's fields, the old one room school house, and the cemetery, we were led by Joyce Proper. Since that day, I have kept in touch with Joyce. She is now in her mid 80s.
I called her to find out how she's doing. Our conversation lasted longer than usual because I asked more questions about her life's journey. I was surprised to learn she herself got her humble beginnings north of Greenbay, WI in a one-room school house for kindergarten before going to the elementary school. It was there where she learned about plants, the American Indians, and how important agriculture was for their survival. Since Joyce and I volunteered at Grant Woods to preserve the forest, I inquired about what's new? She surprised me to learn, she's still working in the Forest Preserve and shared that the Lady Slippers she discovered when I still lived in Lake Villa, IL had disappeared. Lo and behold, another volunteer shared with her that the Lady Slippers relocated to a new location in Grant Woods, more private, with less humans.
Our conversations continued and it was then that I realized how important it is to be empathetic towards generations that came before me and to pay attention, listen, and learn. Suddenly, it hit me, life lessons and stories are very important. Storytelling are the seeds that are needed to be planted just like perennials. They need to be told and should last indefinitely, without stripping our culture from good history lessons. Empathy without sadness for the elderly is a great teacher for those who are willing to listen. ---Patricia Feager