A Plant, A Partner, A Daughter, A Granddaughter
- February 3, 2018
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On the day that my life partner, Barbara, and I moved in together she had a tiny plant, about a foot tall, that she called Benjamin Fig (Ficus Benjamina). That was August, 1988. I knew what a Ficus plant was because I once had one in my office and it was big. I commented that I had never seen such a small Ficus plant. She told me that she bought the plant in August, 1972 when she moved into an apartment with a bunch of girls just off the L.S.U. campus in Baton Rouge. And she said the plant had never grown, not even an inch, for those 16 years. Within two weeks of us moving in together, the plant had doubled in size and has grown ever since. Benjamin Fig is now 46 years old and we are very good friends. Back then, it had refused to grow. It, like Barbara, had been waiting to be watered with love.
When I moved out of my daughter’s home on July 3, 1978, a part of her froze in time, just like Benjamin Fig did at the beginning of its life. Alecia was seven years old then. On July 3, 2016, Alecia and her daughter, my granddaughter, Amber, moved across country and in with me for a five month sojourn and then into their own home. Ever since that second July 3rd, like Benjamin Fig, Alecia and Amber have been sprouting their wings and learning to fly.
What I didn’t know, or at least the extent of, was how much they are learning to live from the heart. And how much Alecia has grown as an adult and as a mother.
Just yesterday Alecia advised me to “receive” Amber’s being upset with me “as simple love from her to me”. That is deep. That is knowing someone. That is knowing the nature of love.
Amber had accused me of “bailing out on her” for the way I was going about getting her iPad fixed, instead of following Amber’s (11 years old) exact instructions about that. I had synthesized those instructions into a much quicker way of getting it done, for her sake, but not doing it her way turned out to be something very upsetting to her. Ouch to a grandfather’s heart and lesson learned!
The wisdom I want to share here is Alecia’s for her counsel that Amber’s acting out was her version, in essence, of “simple love from her to me”.
What is striking to me about this is that it is the same counsel the ascended master gives that dictated the wisdom of the sacred text, “A Course in Miracles”, which is near and dear to me and a multi-decade practice of mine. A Course in Miracles says that every one of us, in every given moment, is always either giving love or asking for love because, at our core, the very center of our being, we are love.
In Alecia’s wisdom, she knew that Amber was asking for love from me. Her heart was broken, like Benjamin Fig’s, like Barbara’s, like Alecia’s, like all of ours has been. My way of doing things, without advance explanation to Amber, scared her and she closed down, wrapped fear around her heart and felt abandoned. I didn’t abandon her. She abandoned herself. But she’s still too young to realize that yet. She felt abandoned, “bailed out on”, and was reaching out for love the best way she knew how.
A mother’s wisdom is sublime. A partnered love is sublime. All love is sublime. All relationships are sacred because, at their core, is where love resides.