09 April 2011

The Pleasure and Pain of a Life Well Lived

Today we dug compost through the vege patch (and by "we", I mean my husband), then we transplanted some baby strawberry plants and sowed our winter veges (both of us). Fingers crossed everything grows! Once that was done I went around dead-heading the roses, some of which are still going great guns even though we're officially well into autumn.

There's one particular rose that is a lot of work, because it's always covered in hundreds of blossoms. It's an old-fashioned "coral" rose, dark pink with only five petals on each flower. The profusion of blooms is lovely, but it means I have to spend a lot more time snipping off all the dead heads. And I need to do this to make more flowers come.

My brain drifted into thinking about how this is like life. If you'll indulge me...

The first way is that sometimes we need to cut things out of our lives before we can move forward. Perhaps we need to literally clear clutter out of our homes before we can take up a new hobby, make room for a child or downsize to a smaller house. Clearing physical space can also lift weight from our spirits, making it easier to move through life. Other times, we may need to prune bad influences from our lives, whether that is negative people, poor media choices or clinging to old habits... anything else which stops us from moving forward.

The second thing that occurred to me is that with much beauty comes much work, with much risk comes greater reward, and sometimes with much pleasure comes much pain. The bigger lives we lead, the more potential there is for hard times. If we choose to love, we may be hurt. Putting ourselves out there artistically comes with the inevitable stab of rejection. In order to be successful in business, you have to put in the hard yards. Some people live smaller lives, doing just enough to survive with what they're given. But I hope I have the courage to live larger, to work hard and love fully in the hope of a richer existence.

1 comment:

  1. This: But I hope I have the courage to live larger, to work hard and love fully in the hope of a richer existence.

    I find it's easy to forget that this is the goal. It's hard for me to put myself out there--both creatively, and in friendships and even in my marriage. It's much easier to stay "safe" (whatever that means). But, the opposite of courage is cowardice, and I'd much rather add courageous to my life's resumé, even if it means getting hurt. In theory, I'm all in. In practice? Yeah, I'll, um... never mind.