Dancing Buds, Sterling Silver Earrings by Stacie Florer 2017
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. Elizabeth Appell
As I look out my window, I see OLD trees starting to form buds in anticipation of longer, sun-lit days and warmer weather.
It occurred to me that those trees, at least most of them, have been around longer than I have; yet, they still produce buds every year, with the promise of blossoming.
It isn’t about endurance. I believe its more about trust. Trusting in the wisdom of the seasons, and that just because one year passes, doesn’t mean that the season to blossom is permanently over.
Our culture perpetuates this myth that blossoming is only for the young. But nature insists that blossoming happens when the right environmental conditions are met, regardless of age.
Ahh…isn’t that wonderful to contemplate? Just a little turn of the mind…a bit of noticing about the reality that just IS when we slow down enough to really notice our lives and our place in the natural process of living.
I have a scraggly lavender plant that I have been trying to keep alive inside my home while winter gives way to spring. The environmental conditions are absolutely terrible for it…no sun as my house is rather dark; no wind to strengthen her so I lightly stroke her leaves whenever I pass by on my way out the door. I can give her warmth; I can pretend there is wind, but I can’t possibly replicate the natural environment she needs to thrive and grow.
I am just giving her enough to stay alive, but her potential is on hold. The way she looks reminds me of how I feel when my environment is not allowing me to thrive.
Do you know what your particular environment must be to bud, unfurl and lean towards the light?
Forming your root system
For this stage in my life, I knew a few years ago that I needed a stable, physical place to form my foundation. After living on the wind, a home was now necessary for me to put down a root system. I was ready to land.
For many, many years, I lived like the annual. I had a shallow root system, and most of my energy was being put into seeding those I came into contact with new ideas that were potentially mutative for them.
While I was ‘on the move’, I befriended so many that were in places of transition. Energetically, this pattern of acquiring experiences with people that were undergoing tremendous change kept repeating itself. I noticed it, and took note.
Our friendships bloomed so quickly…a great sudden burst of energy! I loved it! But either I would move or they would move..and the great thrust of pent up energy was gone again.
For the time, it was correct for me to live like that.
But when it was time for me to change my environment, I felt it in a very deep way. I couldn’t seem to replenish myself for the energy needed to keep producing those seeds from shallow roots. Instinctively, I knew it was time to work on my own root system.
Over the last year or so, I have used my energy in a much different way. It is so much slower than before!
I met a few people my first year..mostly those in my neighborhood. Close to my rooting system…I didn’t venture out that far from where I was most needed energetically. Although many of my friends and family did visit us…and that was quite novel!
As those people in my life that have been so important to me while I was on the wind traveled through, I watched where they wanted to congregate for communion in my home.
In those areas, I have developed the environment to help support conversations and closeness. I am using gorgeous crystals from my home state of Arkansas to help amplify those areas energetically as well as choosing paint colors to promote warmth, security and safety.
Where they sleep while here, I have lovingly attended to developing a cozy place for them to rest and recover.
My jewelry studio environmentally needs some help..I have noticed that I haven’t quite tweaked it to where it will support my deep rooted desires creatively..but that will continue to develop slowly before it is ready to bloom.
And I’m ok with the longer timeframe. I am struggling with getting rid of the shallow rooted way of thinking about my work environment!
What does your physical environment reflect back to you regarding your own root system? Is it shallow like the annual, or deep like the perennial? Or somewhere in-between like the biannual?
All three of these root systems have a purpose…but what happens when your particular root system no longer works for you and you stop thriving?
Your nights probably become shorter (sleep issues anyone?) and the desire for a new environment starts to really take hold (daydreaming replaces night-dreaming).
As to the flip side of this notion, I have observed friends that have very deep root systems, but they are no longer able to form new buds and bloom. The old ideas of themselves are dying within; and its time for them to put their energy into forming new life seeds and reproducing their essence elsewhere.
Sometimes, a deeply rooted being provides much shade for those around them, and those people aren’t interested in stepping into their own light at the expense of losing the shade that you may provide. That can be a very difficult transition to make.
There is a time for many where it is now correct for them to take to the wind and see where they land to start anew. Shallow rooted plants often produce the most gorgeous, life-infused blooms!
I know what it is to ride the wind…to live with a heart-quickened existence. Possessions are light, keys are few on the keychain and total immersion in experiences is vital as great amounts of energy are collected to produce something new.
Shallow or deep, or somewhere in between, all of them are necessary to us as we continue to evolve and grow.
But blooming requires so many things…and none of them are dependent upon the age we are! Our roots just have to support our intentions, and our environment must nourish and support our ideals…and then the buds will set, and we will be in a place to unfurl.
Simple, but not easy!
Why do I make jewelry? To align my desires and beliefs about living a meaningful life with my business goals of producing personal adornment infused with meaning and intention.
The vehicle that I have chosen to use to explore this amazing journey between an idea and a real, 3-D object is via my jewelry. I want all parts of the process, from thinking about it–to making it– to offering it for sale– to teaching it to be a singular experience for both myself and the future owner of my efforts and ideas in metal.
Soul to Substance was a name that was given to me during a contemplative and solo walk in the woods when Shayne and I were traveling around the United States a couple of years ago. We decided to spend a few months in Arkansas, where we both grew up, and we found a vacation house to rent in Hot Springs Village. It was in the summer, which is a beautiful time to be in Arkansas, although its really hot.
There was a trail nearby, called the Mourning Dove Trail, that I liked to walk with Sadie daily. It is a special, special place for me. I was out walking the trail by myself, stopped by a small creek and experienced one of those moments where you have such clear and sudden insight into a BIG idea that it throws you back for a moment in its stunning simplicity and meaning.
After Sadie and I left the creek, as I was walking, it occurred to me that the clothes I had on my body, the shoes and socks on my feet and the glasses on my face all began as an idea in someone else’s mind.
We are literally surrounded by ideas by way of anything and everything that has every been crafted, manufactured or built. I like to tell my nieces that if you want to be a mind reader, then read a book. That is nothing but ideas and thoughts from someone you might want to learn from and be inspired from…and the miracle of the printing press! To be able to spread ideas in word form with complete sentences for those lucky enough to be able to read changed our world!
But as I was wandering about on that trail, I realized that our world is based on this principle in that everything starts out as something that can’t be seen, touched, smelled or tasted. It begins in the soul.
That wispy barely there seed of something starts in our souls, turns into an idea and our purpose is to practice bringing our ideas and our ideals into the world, into the physical.
Or as my friend Cindy said to me so beautifully and astutely a few days ago regarding why we artists feel so compelled to make things, it’s about the “challenge of working through an idea and having it turn in to a real, dimensional object.”
But even if you are not an artist in the traditional sense of the word, you do create daily.
Your ideas about your life show up in your physical environment. What you choose to surround yourself with, what you choose to watch on television, listen to on your radio or iPod…you are constantly creating your reality based on other people’s ideas, as well as your own.
This was another big, fat Aha! moment for me. I have the power to choose the ideas that I want to live with…all the way down to something as simple as the type of toothpaste I decide to brush my teeth with each day.
This seemingly simple realization changed my outlook on just about everything in regard to how Shayne and I want to live the rest of our lives. Shayne has had a dream about building a small house whereby everything about it and in it has a specific purpose. He wants to build it with his own hands. He wants to infuse his ideas about simple living into a physical structure for us to live in when we are not traveling around so much.
(Update: We bought a house instead! But we are ‘re-working it’ with our own hands!)
We are both moving down the pathway of being mindful about what comes into our home in the way of products that we use, art that we purchase, furniture that we sit or sleep on…we want and are in the process of clearing out any ‘things’ that we feel were made or manufactured with the idea of subtracting from the quality of the moments we have left on earth.
I have two favorite pairs of pants that I wear all of the time. I bought them at the Saturday Market in Eugene, Oregon 10 years ago. They are handmade. I met the woman that makes them, and she was at the time a single woman, raising the sweetest, chubbiest child I have had the pleasure of meeting.
Her child was always with her, and as I talked to this maker of pants, she told me that she made her own clothes using hemp because it would last forever, getting softer with time and washings; it was very durable and easy to work with and she wanted some pants that had an elastic waistband to grow and shrink with time as our bodies naturally do. Every pair was infused with love for her child, as this was the means that she was able to house and feed them both.
When I wear them, I briefly think about her intentions for making them, and it makes me feel good knowing that I choose to clothe myself with the energy and essence of this amazingly earthy and industrious mother. And the pants have lasted through hiking and fishing trips, infused with memories of being with friends and family doing some of the things that I love spending my time doing. And she was right about the elastic waistband…I can continue to wear them whatever size my belly is at whatever time in life I happen to be in, as I happen to have a stomach that really does expand an inch when I eat ANYTHING.
That is what Soul to Substance is about for me.
I want to live from my Soul and see what Substance comes from that. This is what my jewelry is about as well. I still don’t have words to try and explain why I am compelled to put so much texture on my work, or why I feel such a strong urge to make my jewelry the way I do. I am still figuring that out, working out what it all means for me. I have understood my jewelry on a soul level…but I am gradually getting to where I can talk about the feelings that emerge as I bring it out of my Soul into Substance.
It is ever evolving, but I do feel like I am getting closer. I dream of an art retreat someday called Soul to Substance where those of us that are interested in exploring this idea more can gather and see what ideas we can birth into this world. I see Soul to Substance as a big umbrella idea…many things can fit under it!
Below are some new earrings available in my shop for $85. These are one of a kind…I don’t have this design in any of my accounts! They measure 2 inches long and about 1/2 inch wide. I usually make the triple disc earrings without the spears of kyanite, but a few days ago, I had the idea to combine these two elements of my work.
I had a rough month…it looks like I have to have a hysterectomy in April. I am still in the investigative stage of this experience as well as just getting used to the idea. I will be home convalescing for about 6 weeks, and most likely won’t be doing much in the way of making jewelry.
I think for the next few weeks I will be making just what I want to make, all one of a kind pieces as I process through my upcoming surgery. As I make stuff, I will post it here and on my Instagram account too…
As far as everything else…I love my part-time job and the progress I am making in a completely different area of my life as it pertains to becoming a Human Design Analyst. I finished up my second series of pre-requisites for certification last week and will be taking my last pre-req class in September. Next year, I start my professional classes and am so excited about this new direction in my professional life.
I am curious to see what emerges creatively in the next few weeks as I drill down and explore emotionally what it means to have my womb removed. Today, I found a bird’s nest that had been abandoned due to the cold weather snap we have experienced here, and I put it over on my oak tree stump that I have converted into an outdoor fairy house. It occurred to me that birds must build their womb…and when the conditions are not right, they abandon it.
I guess the conditions are no longer right for me to retain my own womb. I am not sure how I feel about this on many levels. But I trust that it is all a part of the journey I am to take in this lifetime and that the deeper realizations and learnings will come in their own time.
Kyanite is considered by some to be a healing stone, and a stone that helps those that wear it find their voice. Seems like this pair of earrings is a good start to this next leg in my journey. I am hoping via my creative energy to discover my voice regarding this monumental change for my body.
Blessing to you…and thank you for reading.