A few weeks ago, in the coldest stretch of our surprisingly mild winter, beautiful red flowers dared to bloom. Entranced, I set out to find some camellias of my very own. We returned from a large Virginia nursery, triumphant, with pansies, rose bushes, camellias, and a cherry tree ready to beautify our home.
For hours, we have worked in our garden, removing the dead leaves and creating space for new plants to take root. There is something nourishing to the soul about working in the dirt. Sifting the newly-upturned earth through my fingers, I felt alive with possibility and excited to see how our garden evolves. In just a few weeks, the rose bushes have grown from bare stems to lush plants with beautiful leaves. Each day, I’m excited to see what new bud has opened or what new leaves have emerged.
We knew these plants would make our garden pretty to look at. What we didn’t expect was a deeper connection to our community and to each other. Walking around our neighborhood, we now see beautiful camellias seemingly everywhere we turn. We have met neighbors, made friends, and shared gardening tips. We are both amazed that we never noticed camellias before; their cheerful blooms remind us that it’s time to reengage. After naturally turning inside for winter, we now are primed to appreciate the subtle beauty around us.
That’s what our yoga practice does for us as well: it first helps us connect to ourselves, so that we can then open to the wonders that have been there all along. May you find more beauty on and off your mat this spring.