Plants need sunlight to survive. To make food, photosynthesize, and all of that science-y stuff. My amaryllis, purchased about a month ago and happily thriving in its bright red pot on my dining room table, bends and turns towards the window, craving the sun’s rays. Somewhere in its molecular make-up is the understanding that a life without the sunlight means certain death.
In our lives, it is all too easy to fall into a pattern of melancholy, apathy, or desperation. To either consciously or sub-consciously shroud ourselves in darkness, believing a challenge to be insurmountable, turning proverbial molehills into mountains in our hearts.
And then an event comes along that shatters any mountain of your own with its inexplicable horror – that threatens to plunge you into the deepest and darkest pit of despair.
An amaryllis will not survive in darkness. It will not bloom, it will not share its precious, life giving blossom and its burst of colorful beauty. And thus a person, or entire community of people, cannot survive – cannot share their own beauty – without the light. We must always remember to turn towards the light. And we must BE the light for those who suffer more than any one parent, sibling, teacher, or friend should ever have to bear.
On this Monday, as a community and a nation attempt to pick up the pieces of a shattered world, I am counting my blessings as never before. I am taking a lesson from the amaryllis that, unaware of the horrific events of Friday the 14th of December, is bending and turning towards the light, preparing to do its small yet meaningful part. When my amaryllis blooms, it will bring joy to my heart, and serve as a reminder of my own responsibility to bloom & bring joy to whomever I can.
On Tuesday, December 18th, I will join others in the blogging community to observe a day of silence in honor of those who lost their lives or the lights of their lives in Newtown, Connecticut. I wish everyone reading nothing but love, peace, and light this week and forever.