Until very recently I used to think that I wanted to be chosen. I kept equating this gesture with worth and value. I thought I needed people, men in particular to choose me, so that I would somehow feel special or important. It wasn’t until a recent hike that I decided to abandon this ridiculous theory and set my entire being spinning off it’s axis.
I wrote immediately to my best girlfriends and told them that I felt inspired and that I was writing a piece for them and for myself, that an epiphany was on it’s way in the form of written word. So confident in this new train of thought that I wanted everyone on board.
In my youth I used to collect wildflowers. I would rip them from the ground and deposit them in a glass of water for my room or the kitchen table. I was always disappointed when they died and would leave them sitting out, wilted and sad until they emitted an odor and eventually toss them away. I would repeat this cycle until they stopped blooming or I got bored or they became so commonplace that it no longer seemed worth while.
As I grew older I would drive past patches of wildflowers on the side of the road. It would create a longing deep within me for a garden of my own. I would occasionally fool myself into thinking I would actually take the time to plant a few seeds and lovingly attend to them until a sea of color sprouted from the earth and I had created my very own haven to admire. That never happened. Often I would grab seeds from Home Depot, throw them into my yard and hope for the best, forgetting that I ever planted them, if “planting” was what you could call it.
But over the last year I began hiking diligently and would visit the same preserve a few times a week watching as the seasons changed and the landscape changed with it. Rows and rows of yellow and purple, wicked reds and blackberry blooms appeared on either side of my walk and I began stopping to take pictures. I noticed the smallest bulbs tucked away under palmetto trees and the most boisterous flowers growing right in the center of the trail with reckless abandon.
I stopped to touch each and every one of these delicate treasures and never once plucked one from the earth, preferring instead to leave them there growing proud for the next person to enjoy. And then something happened to me along my many walks there. I began to identify with these flowers. They were breathing the same air as me and seeking a place to exist on the same soil. They needed the same sun and same rain that I did. We were the same, these living, breathing specimens of random beauty. Sometimes misplaced, sometimes wilted, sometimes proud and strong, face towards the sky soaking everything in. Sometimes I would find patches of these flowers trampled into the ground, covered in mud and think to myself “life got you down”. Sometimes the flowers were closed up tight, unwilling to face the trail or me and I would think to myself “staying in bed today eh?” and nod with understanding.
And that’s when it happened. It hit me like a sudden clap of thunder on a summer day.
I don’t want to be chosen.
I don’t want to be plucked up and thrown into someone else’s life until I die
I want to be left wild and beautifully random.
I want to be appreciated exactly as I am or not at all.
There are people who never stop to notice the beauty in small things, who operate on a superficial level, only scratching the surface of the human experience. And there are people like me, like my best female companions who are WILD FLOWERS. Whose beauty is measured by the roots they plant and the limits they aspire to…who exist unapologetically in the middle of the road. Defiant. Proud.
Those flowers have no concept of their aesthetic. They don’t compare themselves to the flowers around them, nor do they try to fit or blend into any mold. They bloom as whatever they were intended to be, unapologetically free. They don’t care if every set of eyes lay upon them or if no eyes see. They exist. They live truly free. Not a care in the world, no desire to be anywhere except exactly where they are. Relying only on the natural course of things to sustain them, or end them.
And why would I want to made a rose when I could be made a thorn? Why would I want to be caged in glass houses?
I am a wildflower.
You are a wildflower.
We are not made to fit a template, to conform, to be chosen. We were meant to just be, to be appreciated for our unique beauty in whatever shape or color that may be. We weren’t made to compete with one another but to compliment each other, to grow roots, to charm our way up to the blue skies, to weather the rains and shelter when needed. To ebb and flow with the cycles of life, to share the soil under the same sun.
We were made to be wild and unkempt in a world that wants to see us buy into the constraints of ego and capitalism, the insecticide of pride.
I want to tell my friends to stay wild, to BE wild!!
That your beauty lies in your ability to be what no one else on this earth can be and that is to be YOU.
I am a wildflower.
You are a wildflower…
and that is everything.