Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Life's Encore

Encore azaleas are my favorite perennial flowering shrubs.  The warm days of spring call them forth from their winter slumber into a glorious display that lasts for weeks.  As the last days of summer heat wind down and trees turn red, orange, and yellow, the Encores put on another show. "Look at me" they seem to say as other summer flowers are in their last hurrah. Isn't life like that?  We start out in our youth with fresh idealism. The world is our oyster and we are going to make it a better place. Our careers will be rewarding and profitable. We are going to do a better job than our parents in our marriages and raising our children. Time stretches before us in a long unbroken line like a railroad track heading west through the plains.  Then life happens. The reality of unfulfilled dreams, chronic illness, family strife, and broken promises intrudes and we are left wondering what happened.  We struggle to find meaning in life and strength for each day.  Our pain causes us to look for the still small voice of God and we are renewed. Our life experiences teach us and we find we are strong. As we approach the fall of our life, we have a measure of freedom to be the person we always wanted to be.  There seems to be a bit more time to pursue new hobbies and interests.  Others appreciate our wisdom learned in the school of hard knocks. It is our chance to make an encore and bloom one more time..  

Bloom Where You are Planted

Today I jump into the 21st century - twelve years late. I am starting a blog to chronicle my life as a late bloomer.  I’ve struggled to keep up with the latest computer operating systems and software. I finally gave in to text messaging and using a smart phone so that I can keep up with the grandkids.  My late bloomer, husband, is not intimidated by computer-eaze and has pushed and prodded me to become proficient in the latest gadgets. The blogosphere has called to me for some time since I like to write. Blogging demands discipline, and I need the regimen of regular writing. Blooming late is all about taking risks.  What could be more risky than writing about life and letting the world see your innermost thoughts?  Charles describes himself as a calculated risk taker.  He still works long after the normal retirement age, creating and innovating to improve the safety and efficiency of aircraft.  Sometimes, we ask ourselves are we too late to bloom?  The answer lies in the wise words of the Psalmist: “That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose fruit does not wither; whatever they do prospers.” Psalms 1:3.  As two late bloomers, we hope to inspire you to join us in discovering your passion so that you too can “Bloom where you are planted.” (This quote was first spoken by St. Francis de Sales, Bishop of Geneva, who lived from 1567-1622.)