Celebrate You! Strength Through Diversity #IWD2020
In spite of the deep snow that still covers the backyard and surrounding woods like a thick, downy, duvet, signs of spring are everywhere. With temperatures climbing, daylight increasing, and snow melting, spring flowers will soon be poking their heads through the soil, their beauty bursting as they reach for the sun.
Another sure sign of spring is International Women’s Day, celebrated annually around the world on March 8. The two have lessons in common that apply equally to everyone, not just women.
Crocuses, a member of the Iris family, comprise 90 species growing from corms. That’s a minuscule amount of the 391,000 species of plants currently known to science. Many crocus varieties are cultivated for their flowers, predominately in hues of lilac, mauve, yellow, and white. Others have medicinal properties. The spice saffron comes from the stigmas of an autumn-blooming crocus.
No matter how small any species is, each plant has an important role to play in the ecosystem. Greater species diversity ensures natural sustainability for all life forms.
Each crocus contains within it, the stories of the flower, fruit, and who it is—ancient stories that define the life that emerges from the corm. However, that story can only be expressed when planted in specific soil, climate, and geographic location. Ensuring it gets plant-specific requirements for sunlight, nutrients, and water produces the most robust and beautiful bloom.
You’re probably wondering about the connection to International Women’s Day.
Events around the globe will celebrate the successes of women. Many draw attention to high-profile, courageous, and visionary women— pioneers, leaders, and mentors who have broken through barriers to accomplish great things. We need these women and always will. I’m extremely grateful for the sacrifices they’ve made, often in selfless service.
Then there are the vast majority of us. If you’re like me, listening to or reading about these women is inspiring. On the other hand, it can be discouraging if we aspire to be just like them and measure ourselves against their accomplishments. We aren’t all meant to be CEOs, but we all have a vital role to play, that only we can fill.
Like plants, we carry within us ancient stories and unique gifts, the sum of all our ancestors and their experiences. No matter how much a crocus aspires to be a mighty oak, it will never happen. It’s true beauty, power, and strength—and contribution to life— comes from being a crocus.
Similarly, we live our best and make the greatest difference when we recognize, accept, and nurture who we are. The world needs us. This year on international Women’s Day, celebrate YOU!
Related post: Building a Better World; Gender Equity is a Start