“They tried to bury us. They didn’t know we were seeds”, is a well known quote by poet Dinos Christianopoulos. One of my lemon sprouts split at the seed today, making the most of a sunny day and reaching for the light. I had initially thought of sharing a photo blog for today’s Ragtag Daily Prompt, but decided to elaborate on the lessons we learn from plants. The lemon seeds were planted two weeks ago. They sprouted last week, and I was thrilled to see this eager little one getting acquainted with its surroundings this morning. Nature teaches us so much! While we navigate through this maze of life, all nature does is reach for the light. Plants don’t set limits for themselves; them breaking through soil and aiming for the sky teaches us to shatter obstacles in our way and make the most of what we have, where we are. My older saplings always turn towards the sun, causing me to keep turning the pot to prevent the stalks from bending. A lesson in optimism for us, always looking at the bright side of things. Plants move at their own pace, are happy with themselves, and are adaptable. I planted several seeds two weeks ago; some sprouted, some didn’t. Sometimes things work out, sometimes they don’t, either experience should be valued and learned from. The seeds sprouted at different times, one seed cracked open in the morning, and another in the evening, revealing two tiny leaves within. Patience is truly a virtue. It is monsoon season here and we do not always have sunshine, but they have made the most of their environment. Whether rain, wind, fluctuating temperatures, light or shade, they are acutely aware of their surroundings. Their very struggle for existence is their strength, they don’t require each other’s validation to exist and grow, and thrive in simplicity and in the power of silence. While we see the stalks and leaves – and flowers and fruits of older plants – the foundational roots are beyond our sight, and in the case of tubers, the food itself. People have roots the same way. We don’t know everyone’s life story, where they have come from, where they plan on going, what their current state of mind is. It bodes well not to be judgmental of others based on what the surface shows us without having dug deeper. At the same time, remember your worth as a person. The largest of trees starts off as a tiny seed. Value your achievements, applaud your victories, take pride in who you are without being dependent on the opinions of others.
Life lessons from a cat:
~No matter how small, if you find a ray of sunshine, bask in it’s glory.
~Start the day by stretching. Stretch before you do anything.
~Gather information before you take a leap.
~Be soft and furry, but keep your claws sharpened at all times.
~When in doubt, study the subject with patience.
~Meditate. Quietly gaze upon the world. Schedule your “me” time.
~Socialize, but don’t lose your individuality.
~As you fall, stay calm, regroup, and land on your feet.
~Look your best, even if no one is watching.
~Be curious. Make the world your playground.
~Have confidence in yourself and take risks.
~Take frequent naps, but always be ready for new adventures.
~Climb to the highest point and enjoy the view.
~Hiss if you have to.
~When in trouble, look cute and cuddly.
~Value a new perspective, even if it means lying down on the floor.
~Be persistent. Never give up if you really want something.
~Approach problems with focus and determination.
~Make eye contact when communicating. Even if the language is different, everyone should know your opinion.
Today is the 45th death anniversary of Bruce Lee. The martial arts superstar who passed away on 20th July 1973, left behind in his legacy not just the art of fighting and memorable movies, but also his wisdom through numerous quotes that are pure gold. Whether you are a martial arts practitioner or not, the philosophies of Bruce Lee and Jeet Kune Do are timeless and applicable to life in general.
~The more we value things, the less we value ourselves.
~Absorb what is useful, discard what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.
~Do not pray for an easy life. Pray for the strength to endure a difficult one.
~No man is defeated unless he is discouraged.
~I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.
~A conditioned mind is never a free mind. Be born afresh.
~The stiffest tree is the most easily cracked. The bamboo or willow survives by bending with the wind.
~The key to immortality is living a life worth remembering.
~Life itself is your teacher and you are in a state of constant learning.
~Be water. Empty your mind. Be formless, shapeless.
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So we’re almost at the end of the year. Looking back, 2017 was a bit of a setback for me. (At least as far as the fitness goals I had set for the year were concerned). An accident, right in the middle of the year, prevented me from running in as many races, and performing in as many dance shows as I would have liked to. There were other fitness endeavors that I had wanted to try out, like Cross Fit and Bung Fly, which sadly were not meant to be this year. (Fortunately I had got in Powerlifting and Pound before the accident, so I’m not entirely disappointed.) Travel plans were also affected, since moving around was an issue. Recovery has been slow and steady, and I look forward to returning with a bang.
On the positive side, 2017 turned out to be a very bibliophilic year – I had set a target of 30 books on Goodreads, and have completed 43 so far. (Maybe I’ll finish another one by the time the year ends). I also got in quite a bit of painting and craft work (on account of my prolonged rehabilitation – When the body couldn’t be active enough, the brain took over.) A bit of singing also happened somewhere in there – a new department for me. I can dance and play musical instruments, but singing for someone was something I had never done before. This blog was an outcome of the accident – since I was home bound for quite some time, I had to consciously look for ways to be active, without really being active. Writing is not my forte – I think a lot and (try to) do a lot and even talk a lot about the first two, but had never considered putting those down into words. But what better than to attempt the things you fear you’re not good at. And I’m learning as I go; along with connecting with some amazing bloggers out here – readers, runners, dancers, musicians – it’s been a happy time writing and reading and interacting with like minded people from around the world. Now I actually look forward to writing and posting something as often as I can. (Super pleased to sign off the year with a blog post.)
So, 2018 is almost here. Time to set new goals, and get better and stronger at the previous ones. Here’s to looking the new year in the eye, and facing all kinds of obstacles it might throw your way. Fall down, brush off the dirt, and get back on your feet and try again. A very Happy New Year to all. See you on the other side.