A Summer Abundant
This summer has provided an incredible bounty from the rains of spring. The Saturday farmer’s market near my house is a riot of stone fruit and berries and melons. And the radishes! Oh, the radishes. They are grown with a wisdom and care I can taste. The flowers continue to impress. There are dandelions on my walk to work that are 4, 5 feet tall with scraggles of blackberries bursting through fences. It’s wild and summery and dreamlike.
Just like nature herself, I’ve enjoyed some of my own personal ripening from seeds sown and tended through the spring. My focus on empathy and gratitude has made my relationships deeper and more substantial. My diet of produce from the aforementioned market and my shift to a walk & bike commute has made me feel sprightlier and more energized than I have in years. Sobriety has detoxified my soul, allowed epiphanies to penetrate my psyche and create new neural pathways. I used to wish I craved exercise and healthy foods. Now I do. My body feels like a temple, my mind feels engaged and inquisitive. I don’t want to check out, I want to feel, learn, grow.
Feeling vibrant makes it tolerable for me stay present, which helps me make better decisions about how I spend my time. A particularly exacting time tracking experiment this spring made me be really honest with how I was spending my free time. Writing down what I did helped me identify things that made me feel better (cooking, writing) and things that made me feel worse (Netflix, over-socializing). The latter are more addicting, easier to start. But the former felt nourishing and left me in a better place. Doing more of the good stuff consistently helps those decisions become easier to make. I know there are amazing Netflix shows but when was the last time you watched the sun set and put yourself to bed early? It’s marvelous.
My other case study of abundance comes at work, where a spring of courageous, difficult conversations and bigger thinking has created an atmosphere where there’s room for growth, room for humanity, and a common direction. We all contributed to naming our collective values, and identified our strengths and weaknesses with grace, looking for how we can work together to build up rather than pick each other apart. The energy shifted, and while the work on my desk isn’t substantially different, the context feels richer and more fertile. We just had our most profitable month ever and there is more germinating here.
I’m blown away by what is possible in a season. When we show up consistently. When we train ourselves to do emotional labor, to ask for the thing that scares us, to share ourselves vulnerably. It’s amazing how the same sight or behavior can appear so different when we look at it with curiosity and wonder.
Now that I have a taste and a newfound trust in the growth cycle, I intend to become a better guardian of my land. I see what can be harvested with just one season of consistent rain, consistent courage. What can be grown over years, decades, a lifetime? I know I’ve just scratched the surface, this is the stuff of legacy.
Will I be able to nurture this growth? Only time will tell.