“When I were a wee lad oop north wor ma and da giv us each a wee scrap of dirt for wor to … “
I see Scottish people write in Scotch. And if I try really hard I can write in North-East. It’s how the words sound in my head. Except I don’t write phonetically. When I write it’s not how the words sound to me that matters. It’s how they enter your head and sit in your heart. That’s what matters. If I can get what’s in my heart into my head and onto this screen so that these words get into your head and then your heart as they sit in mine … then we can be friends. Start again ….
When we were all children, in a big house in Durham, mum and dad set aside a piece of the garden for each of us to plant stuff. Looking back with an adult head on my shoulders it wasn’t the best plot in the garden. Didn’t get a lot of sun. Was sandwiched between a wall with next door and a dilapidated huge brick stable in ours. But as a child I didn’t know science. I knew life and living. And seeds were all about life and living. I popped a dry husk of dead stuff into the ground. Gave it moisture. Hoped for sun in the day and no frost at night. Watched and waited in hope and expectation. And life happened right there in front of my eyes. That tiny green invisible pin-prick of green. Growth so slow that watching every day made me question whether this life was growing at all. Except those imperceptible baby steps every life takes from seed to beautiful blossoming bouquet – an array of sight and scent … Breaking through that husk between no growth and abundant life … THAT is always imperceptible baby steps.
I see more and more of those green shoots here.
And just like a real garden some shoots are shooting and others just pinpricks. Some still breaking through the husk of “seed”. Not yet connected to the life-giving nutrients of hope, yet to feel the sun on their face, the cool of dusk in the air. But more and more are. Pictures of dog-walks. Posts of visits. Pride in making this “husk of shielding” a safe home and family again.
And yet all of these green shoots … ?
Every single one is living with the same uncertainty we all have. The uncertainty of when and what. The bigger picture of work … how big or small the R … is it six feet or soon to be three … will it be June or July or August …
Just like every shoot starts by poking out of the safety of its husk and into the dangers of the earth and all that micro-bacterial-nutrient-science stuff … Just like every shoot must both push through AND connect with the earth. Must grow both threads of roots to bind with the soil that it must also push through to reach the light. And with that breaking through comes more uncertainty. The confusion of ever changing rain or cloud, sun or grey, heat or cold. Not to mention my curious childlike fingers years ago in Durham – always wanting to poke and prod – to understand this strange new life that was just a dry lifeless husk called “a seed” so little time before.
I see all of that happening here right now. And it is beautiful. You are beautiful. Each of us cannot be constrained. Each of us will grow towards the light no matter what.
I have no idea whether those seeds we planted as children felt the pain of change. The pain of dying as a seed to become the roots and shoots of a new life. I know I feel the pain of change right now. The feeling of being misunderstood. The frustration of being called something I am not. The anger at being left behind. All of us are all feeling the pain of change. Even those breaking the rules and keeping the R up (really???) are feeling the pain of change. We are each different and yet we are all the same. We each seek the light to become something we aren’t right now.
I never used to wake with the dawn. Never fell asleep with dusk. I used to be in pain at waking so early. Now I find peace with this new rhythm. I used to think Facebook was for one-liners and just look at me/this now. Now I am at peace with so much more than in the before.
Yet redundancy beckons. Financial poverty maybe. Rona beckons. Family disagreements. Work demands. Questions without answers. So many things yet to become safe. So much not knowing and fearing the consequences. Just as this (England) government announcement beckons. So many unknowns.
Why then my contentment to wake at 3.34am? Where from this new joy at a helmet allowing me to be with others? Why my happy tears at seeing you here in this group meeting your own loved ones again … seeing you touching tiny fingers … seeing these little hands in your big hands again … where from my connection with a new mum sharing their new bundle of life with a mother leaving this life in hours … THAT is real – that is great love both sad and happy all at once … I am reading your words in comments and posts here that are forming real relationships in my life outside this space and based only on your words and pictures here …
How can I feel so safe sharing pictures of my joy and vulnerability here – this place we call “the internet” and “social meeja” – with all the dark connotations of fear of predators lurking in the shadows … ? Why do I feel a bond with my feathered friend outside – always the first to kick off the deafening dawn chorus … ? Why do I see more and more behind the mask you wear – that you let me share … ? Why am I safe when I let you see my life, breathe my air … when you invite me to breathe yours … ?
I feel life more strongly than in the before. The pain of change is making me stronger. I am becoming again who I am and want to be. I am finding me in all this change. And I see that more and more in all the imperceptible baby steps in all of you. I see green pinpricks. Strong stems. Buds and blossom. I see bountiful bouquets of life
(I used to hate poetry as a child. Too many rules. Too much “structure” that I had to follow before my words were judged good enough to be “poetry”)
You have all allowed me to make the changes I am going through – that we are all going through. You have given me back my curiosity. A mindset that says whatever I need it to say to keep me walking to the light. To meet others who are the light. Who give me light even in my darkness. Who light my inner light when I have no light to light. A nd yet find my light within when I thought it only in others. YOU allow ME that journey of discovery. And you each make it – make “this” – safe when all around is not. Thank you and you and you and you and …
Whether you are a seed or blossoming bush – a root vegetable or a tree dwelling climber – a slow growing perennial or a fast growing one season only – whether you are like me or not – NONE of that matters. These green shoots I see here more and more “matter”. You matter. I matter. We matter. All of us seeking the light in our own way. Each connected by science I don’t understand. We are each seeing the green shoots of others here. And THAT proof of life gives me hope – allows me to believe that I can if you can – allows me to take another imperceptible baby step – imperceptible to others yet massive to me.
I have never met any of you. Probably never will. Yet I can say with honesty that I love each one here. We are all connected whether we know it or not. And when I know it – THAT is when I sense my light within – THAT is when I am drawn to your light within. This isn’t about science for me, this is about love. Love which brings me inner peace and lights my inner light. Just like you. Just like all of us here. Just like all of us everywhere.
(Today we have plans that keep me away from this space. Please if you would … take my slow response as proof that YOU are helping ME grow again)