Not Dead Yet

There’s a scene in the 1975 movie “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” about being not dead yet. In the grim comedy, a dead man pretends to be alive in order to avoid “the cart.” I’m reminded of that today when I look at my Beach Rose in our side yard. What appears to be a dead section of the Rosa Rugosa is actually the top part of the plant that is protecting the process of re-birth and new growth, underneath.

The dead-looking upper part hides the new growth, hidden unless I bend down, and duck my head under the stems to look, near the brown soil, way down at the base of the scrubby shrub. The dead part actually keeps the new baby shoots safe.

Why can’t us human beings understand this process of death and re-birth better? In our culture of perfectionism, we can learn from the Beach Rose. I’m inspired by this natural process to let the world see my imperfections, in all their glory. I know some part(s) of me have to die in order for me to continue to grow and sprout new growth. I’m okay with that.

Not only are the reddish purple blossoms exceptionally fragrant, they are part of a pollinator pathway. Bees love the yellow stamens, buzzing deep inside and wiggling their bodies all around, before they fly on to the plant they will fertilize. The Beach Rose’s life cycle is part of Nature’s life cycle.

Creativity and wellness message for today: Let’s accept imperfections in ourselves and others. Let’s rejoice in new growth!

(All photographs (c) by Adair Heitmann)

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