The Blooming

There’s something about flowers that has always intrigued me. Their beauty. Their aroma. The way they are created from basically nothing, serve their gorgeous purpose, and then quietly disappear, only to re-emerge again in their next season. Flowers mark the passage of time on the world’s clock.

That, and their sex organs are proudly, colorfully, elegantly on display. No shame. No excuses. Nothing conservative about the pistil and stamen. When bathed in that scent, designed to do nothing but attract, I am sometimes overwhelmed by the sheer force of nature, the astounding instinct to continue living.

This was the attitude I brought to the glorious blooming of the cherry blossom trees at the University of Washington. I stood in their midst and just inhaled, allowing the pure luxury of being amongst them wash over me.

I wasn’t even bothered by the drone flying overhead, because I knew its footage would be unforgettable, And I was right. Here it is, on Youtube.

Life. What a gift.

Check this out, y’all. I wrote a book!


“I’m so glad you moved to Seattle,” a friend said.

“Me too! I feel like I’m blossoming.”

And it’s true. In the short time I’ve been here, I’ve opened myself up, allowed myself to be vulnerable, and a lot of great things have happened in the process. I don’t think I could go back to being my Florida self, even though she existed for 49 years.

You really don’t expect to make yourself over from the inside out at this age, but intentional or not, it’s what I’ve seemed to have done. Not that I’m 100 percent different. As a matter of fact, some of my traits have become even more ingrained as I’ve become more comfortable in my own skin. I feel as though I have a stronger sense of who I am, and am quite okay with the conclusions that I’ve drawn.

This is an unexpected boon at this stage of my life.

“Talk about a late bloomer!” I said to my friend.

“Nonsense! You’re right on time,” she replied.

What a delightful attitude. And she has a point. Whenever you bloom, it’s obviously right when you were supposed to do so. Nature has a way of taking its course.



Today is the first day of spring, and I couldn’t be more excited. You have to understand, I haven’t seen spring in 40 years. In Florida we had two seasons: Summer and January. So this is a huge deal for me.

Even the thought of breaking out a different set of clothes has me grinning like an idiot. And I love that things (including me) actually look different from one season to the next here. Maybe you take that for granted, but I gaze upon the blooming flowers where a few weeks ago there were none, and I see it as the natural miracle that it is.

I even ran out and bought a bunch of flowering plants and planted them in the yard of my rental house. And I hate yard work. I’m not sure my landlord will be thrilled that I’m digging holes in the yard, so mum’s the word. (Pardon the pun.)

And I made it through a winter! I had my doubts. (Especially when the heater died in my car.) The ever-shortening days felt ominous and unnatural to me.

But we’ve come out the other side! Joy! Life! Renewal! A visible marker of the passage of time! Is this what spring fever feels like? I’d forgotten. I feel like taking off my clothes and rolling naked amongst the tulips. And that’s a problem, because there’s a tulip festival in my near future…


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