Monday, January 26, 2009


And the time came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.

Anais Nin

The day it snowed six inches here, I was preparing to leave the next morning for our trip to Florida. While my son tumbled away at gymnastics, I hit the Kroger across the way to get a few last minute items and a couple of mags for the flight. Knowing money is tight, I really tried to not look around at all--really, I really tried--but on my way out of the book section a title caught my eye and I was curious. The sky blue cover drew me, and the title intrigued me. The lone, little bird on the front looked as if it were about to soar, and my heart recognized that longing. And so I picked up "Broken Open" by Elizabeth Lesser and tossed it in among the protein bars and snack packs.

Not being a member of the Church of Oprah, I was unaware what I was picking up. All I knew was that I was drawn to it. One of those God-moments when the right book appears at the right time and the right words penetrate your heart. This book has had a few of these moments, and just in time.

Life is messy and painful right now. No amount of chocolate chip cookies is going to fix it. I'm trying to take Ms. Lesser's advice and allow myself to be broken open, but it is so contrary to my nature. My nature is to fold my arms up tight, to withdraw, to close off, to push away. As she puts it, "I was like the rosebud, holding myself together, tight and tense, terrified of breaking open." A more apt description of my heart could probably not be written.

"But the time had come... It was time for me to step boldly into the fullness of life, with all of its dangers and all of its promises. Remaining tight in the bud had become a kind of death. The time had come to blossom."

I am tired of "holding myself together, tight and tense..." I don't know what blooming looks like--unfolding petal by petal or perhaps one great burst of color-- but I'm determined, by God's grace, to try and find out. Perhaps I am a bulb, preparing to burst up through the thawing ground come spring. Perhaps I am an Amarylis, meant to bring vibrant color to these winter days. Or perhaps I am a teacup rose, up on someone's window sill, pulled in from the porch as a reminder of summer days and a promise of the warmth to come. Perhaps. Or perhaps not. But I'm willing to see what will break open...


Anonymous said...

Sounds scary, but...
The little glimpses we get to see in your writing lead me to look forward to this bloom with delight and anticipation.

Anonymous said...

loved the last paragraph. glad to see your back to writing.

lorie said...

thank you, both of you...

angela--how've ya been?

kim--when ya gonna post somethin'?