My son came home with this beautiful sunflower the day school broke out for half term. The flower came with a beautiful poem dedicated to me. We call our sunflower ‘sugarcakes’ and she sits gracefully by our kitchen window.
She was hidden below the rich dark soil for two days and we watered her lovingly and persuaded her to come out and show the world her beauty. At first, the beginnings of her slender stalk revealed itself, a beautiful yellow-green strand against the dark brown earth in which she was sown. Now you can see her, her delicate frame leaning towards the light in this place where a full day of sunshine is so rare. She knows without having been taught, where to lean. She bends and leans towards the light that heals and the light that will nourish and nurture her. We are patient and expectant of her blossoming. Today her leaves are showing and we can’t wait to see her full face of yellow and green. The first thing my son says when he wakes up is, “Mummy lets see how tall sugarcakes is today.”
It will take time of course for her to be comfortable enough and nurtured enough for her to show us her full radiance. Watching her grow makes me think about growth and nature in every living thing. How our pure nature knows which direction to go. Sometimes we may go to the wrong places looking for love out of fear and sadness and denial. Yet, there is within us, a force that keeps looking for the light and knows where to find it. It takes self-belief and stillness to recognise that pure nature. It takes patience and effort to allow it to do what it does.
As a little girl, growing up in a home where my father sexually abused me and my mother denied it; I leaned towards the light very early. I spent as much time as I could at my grandmother’s house and she nurtured and nourished me with her delicious food, stories and warmth. I did well in school and then applied to a university far away and I didn’t return to live in the place where I was born since then. I have moved and moved and now that I feel I have arrived at a place of stillness, I can appreciate how wonderful this innate programming within us. This leaning towards the light no matter how dark and toxic it can be.
As the cliche goes, life is indeed a journey back to ourselves and back to the light. There are many detours and diversions but deep down we know where to go and we know who will help us get there. We have to hone and refine that inner voice of guidance. It’s so hard to listen when we are full of fear, anger and sadness and we become our feelings. It takes stepping back from our feelings and connecting with that permanent essence to really listen. Then we can separate all the conflicting voices; the ones from the past, the harsh critics, the internalised parents and finally ours.
I have to remind myself sometimes that I did the right thing by getting divorced and moving to London and that I can do all the things that feel so hard. I guess we all do because stress, exhaustion, illness, disappointment can make us all forget sometimes who we are and how far we have come.
I have travelled far and I am leaning towards the light even if doesn’t feel like it sometimes. It is nature’s law. Look at sugarcakes for proof of this.