My Front Porch Was The Ugliest on The Block…

Our front step was an eyesore.


Yep, it was a sad state of affairs.


Why?


The green ferns in our large terra cotta pots had bit the dust. These beautiful plants had thrived until about a year ago. Slowly at first, they had wilted, grown brown and limp. Recently, they had started drooping so low that you had to push past them to get in the house. They were GREAT decorations for a spooky Halloween, but definitely not the welcoming vision I wanted for my front door step.


Yes, I know it has been seven months since Halloween. They have looked terrible since then…


…And yet I had ignored the pots for too long.


It was embarrassing to see and leave them there, and yet I knew it would take effort to change things and I was waiting until I could make time for it. It felt like an overwhelming task that I couldn’t fit into my life. So, I just lived with the limp, unappealing plants festooning my doorway.

Also, I didn’t see them every day. I typically don’t go in and out my front door, so they weren’t staring me in the face every day. I wasn’t watering them so they slowly gave up the ghost. Whenever I did go out the front door and noticed them, I would always say in my head, “I have GOT to deal with these.” And then I would go on with my day.


And then I woke up yesterday knowing that today was the day. The state of affairs had become unbearable for me. I could not go on another minute with things the way they were.


I needed to act.


So, I finally did something about it. Yesterday we replanted the pots.


I made time for it, we went to the nursery to get the plants and soil, and I imagined how beautiful the new pots would look when we were finished.


I had imagined taking them out would be a breeze.


Boy was I wrong!


In petrified soil, the plants hung on for dear life. With big shovels, we worked the soil for a good 10 minutes before we could soften things up enough to get the plants out. And then taking the roots out of the pot took even longer. All down through the huge pot, there were tangles of roots that needed to be sifted through, broken up and removed.


Once we started, there was no turning back so we pressed on. There were moments of discouragement. Throughout, I held onto my vision for the beautiful pots. We used problem-solving, creativity and perseverance to try new approaches and get things done.


Once we finally got the last of the roots out, we poured in fresh, soft, moist potting soil and filled the pots to the brim. Then, we carefully planted fresh young seedlings – Bacopa, Impatiens, and some small green ferns. Finally, my toddler watered the new plantings while I swept the porch clean. We stepped back to admire our handiwork and look forward to enjoying the blossoming of our new plants. To new life, rejuvenation and beauty.


Why am I telling you this?


Because the process we went through to replant the pots is a lot like the process of making a career or life transition.


When you are feeling stuck, it can seem overwhelming.


You can feel like your roots are hard to unearth. Like you’ve been doing what you’ve been doing for so long that it can feel like you’ll never be able to break free from your current situation. As the juice drains from your work, the “soil” starts to harden and you become less adaptable, resourceful and vibrant. You can start to feel dull and lifeless, and even start to wilt. When you do contemplate and eventually make a change, it can feel like you are uprooting yourself. You can resist it and also feel like it’s going to be just too hard. It can take time and feel like you are doing things wrong as you make the changes necessary to alter your situation.


And then, after the work is done, you find yourself in beautiful fresh new soil, in an environment that feels energizing and delightful.


You certainly aren’t stuck anymore!


You are putting down new roots in a way that feels possible and optimistic, and the going is easy. You are fresh and new and youthful in your attitude and feelings about your future and your potential. You are supple, adaptable and you grow towards the light.


Before, you could not imagine your life any other way. And now, you can’t imagine NOT having things the way they are. Full of joy, beauty, creativity and possibility.


This is what I wish for you.


Warmly,


Merideth

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