Wednesday, July 2, 2008

A win-win situation

by Lisa

Navigating life in a period of transition comes with its challenges. In just a few weeks I'm packing my bags (more like, my bag) for the Windy City, leaving (at least physically) many dear friends from college (the most growing period of my life) as well as the part of the country in which I've spent most of my life.

When it first sunk in that I was leaving, I wondered about how I should invest in relationships. Did I need to taper off times with old friends, or just the opposite? And I also faced decisions about new acquaintances. Do I ask somebody to lunch and just as soon as they let me into their life wave goodbye? (They'll probably just as soon be thinking, "I don't know why you say goodbye, I say hello..." Or maybe only Annie would think that.)

I had the same dilemma two days ago, when I re-found the seed packets some good friends had given me for Christmas. I don't know why I had put off planting them (or making a sourdough starter or writing that thank you card or anything else on The List, for that matter). Ah, procrastination. I guess it took Realizing There Isn't Much Time Left to just go ahead and try planting them. Pretty soon after, this thought flew into my head: "I'm going to be so upset if they actually grow (because I'll kick myself for not having planted them earlier)." Then I (just as) quickly realized the stupidity of that thought - of course I wouldn't be upset! It is almost a truth universally acknowledged that much sadness can be swept away by parsley pesto or a bowl of fresh arugula with goat cheese and vinaigrette.

It was a win-win situation. If I had herbs before I left, I would be joyful. And if I didn't - well, it didn't matter that I hadn't tried earlier!

I labeled the pots with question marks at the end. Who knew if they would contain parsley, chives, or arugula? So I labeled them "parsley?", "chives?", and "arugula?".

Today after getting up from a little nap, I checked the plants to see if they needed water. I couldn't believe my eyes - was I still dreaming? - when I saw tiny little shoots in the arugula pot! It hadn't even been two full day since I had planted them!

So I'm hopeful. Like the arugula, some new friendships of the past few months I'd mentally labeled "friendship?" have similarly started to sprout up. And instead of having regret that we didn't start this earlier, I'm grateful for what they are now.

And so I'm going to water them and care for them for the next 55 days and see what happens.


David E. Barta said...

This post is amazing! It is quite an encouraging note on second-chances. I also love the clever allusions to The Beatles (I love that song) and P & P!

Stephanie said...

i love you? just kidding, that statement doesn't even begin to merit a question mark.