Hope springs eternal

Hope springs eternal

Hope springs eternal in the human breast;
Man never Is, but always To be blest:
The soul, uneasy and confin’d from home,
Rests and expatiates in a life to come.

Alexander Pope, Essay on Man, 1733-34

It’s been a rough week – and not just for me. It seems as if my entire network is in a bit of a funk.

Yesterday, when I was walking into work I saw what I thought was a new shrub planted in front of the main entrance to Erickson Hall.  Since I arrived a bit late, I walked in the side door and didn’t pass by the new shrub.  A faculty member stopped by my office later in the day and asked if I was up to my normal shenanigans. Confused – he asked if I was the one that planted the flowers outside.   I went downstairs to take a closer look at that new shrub.  Someone took the time to lovingly tie oodles of little plastic yellow flowers to the tree.  Of course, due to the stress on my shoulders, tears began to trickle (and quickly freeze) down my cheek.

Even if spring isn’t here, as we are frozen in the depths of the winter and cold, (or frustration and fear,) we can create our own spring.  And, if you are in a place where you can’t muster the energy to create your own spring, take a minute or two find comfort and joy in unexpected places – spring is all around us.

9 thoughts on “Hope springs eternal

  1. I had a very similar experience this week. Tough morning, nothing was going right, frustrated and overwhelmed.

    I went to my normal coffee shop to work (where I should start paying taxes btw) an my normal seat was taken. I was going to leave, but alas…decided to stay. Then, a middle aged women walked in and asked if she could share the outlet next to me. We ended up chatting for 1 1/2 hours. She just finished chemotherapy & had all the energy in the world! What was I in such a frustrated mood for? “When you live every day like it’s your last, you’d be in a great mood today too!” She said. What an inspiration. Kudos to her for a) having the courage to share that personal story and b) fight something 10X harder than I ever had and still have an exceptionally positive attitude!

    I guess that’s my version of the new shrub (:

  2. Thank you so much for this, Leigh. I have to admit that this morning, my own Eddie (my 3 yo son for those who don’t know me) was my personal ray of sunshine. The twins are in that band-aid phase where every bump deserves a cool bandage. He had his Cars bandaid on and just stood in the middle of our kitchen, giggling and showing it off. To get that much joy out of a bandaid, well, it just reminded me that it isn’t all that bad.

  3. To show the power one person can have on a challenging day: Mine was last Friday. Just as I was at my lowest ebb, Megan Gebhart materialized in my doorway. She smiled, gave me a huge hug and left, instantly re-centering me on why I do what I do. How magical, Leigh, that someone just assumed you were that one person who made everyone’s day a little better by planting some flowers in the snow. A true affirmation, but not at all surprising, knowing who you are!

  4. My story for the week is your post. After some emotional conversation, jumping onto Facebook to “clear my mind” and hopefully find something to take my mind off of it, the first thing I see is your post. (I blame you for teary eyes at the moment, btw…but in a good way of course). :)

  5. Great post, Leigh, and wonderful reminder how relatively easy it is to turn around someone’s day. Not at all surprising that someone thought you had put the plastic flowers there.

  6. Thanks for sharing – just what I needed! It was just “one of those days”! And I do agree that it was wonderful that someone assumed you did it!

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