Natalie Ogbourne

If April showers bring May flowers, what do May flowers bring?

Pilgrims, of course.

Of all the cards I have received in my life, you would think I would remember one more profound. No. I remember this. A silly joke that comes to mind more often than seems right does what the best things do. It reminds me of something I need to know: April’s showers will not last. Eventually, they will yield to bloom-coaxing sun and those blooms will usher in something new.

At our house flowers bring bees. When the Redbuds flower, our front yard vibrates with the buzz of bees working the trees, gleaning ingredients for their liquid gold. The pattern is the same in life. As one circumstance fades, another flows in on its tail; what has been providing raw material for what is to come.

I am trying to learn to bid a mental good-bye to tasks completed, hurdles jumped, milestones passed and to greet, with an appropriately timed hello, the new tasks ones that will inevitably follow. Appropriate timing is crucial.  Greeted too early, the future becomes a burden, and I, uneasy. Too late, whatever the future holds becomes an emergency, and I, harried. I am learning, but as a planner who sometimes procrastinates, the lesson is hard.

Well-timed hellos and goodbyes help me to attend to the natural rhythms of life and to navigate trying seasons well, rather than simply surviving life as one long season of stress. They help me remember that there is more to this life than the never-ending list of work to be done. In the good-byes there is space, even if small, to draw a breath before embarking on whatever lies ahead.

At our house, the time has come to say a temporary goodbye to days governed by formal learning and hello to the natural rhythms of curious children with long summer hours to fill. Two of our children are close to saying goodbye to one age and hello to another. I am trying to say goodbye to the mom-myth that I can do it all. Since having a few days of quiet, I’ve said hello to complete thoughts and my long-lost mostly-sunny self.

We have been blessed with the much-needed showers and are enjoying the flowers. What are the May flowers bringing you?