Monday, March 7, 2011

The Cactus of Encouragement

I took the above photo a little over a week ago. It is a small cactus I have on my balcony. My palm can cover the entire group of prickly orbs. On them you can see several buds. None of them have bloomed, yet, but I think a couple more have appeared since I took this picture. Today, I counted 16 in all. I have had this cactus for about 5 years now. I've never seen more than 3 buds on it in a season.

I suspect that the reason this little pot of cacti is so full of buds is that I left it outside for a portion of the cold weather we had here in Houston. I brought it in when the temps got into the 20s, but before that, the cacti experienced some low 30s, maybe even a little nip of freezing temps. I've noticed all around Houston that other plants are starting to put on buds and it looks like it might be a more colorful than usual spring around here.

The stress of the cold weather makes the plants bloom a little extra.

I've mentioned here more than once that 2010 was a hard year for me. Now in the third month of 2011, I'm still a bit stressed. At present, I have only part-time, temporary work, which will run out at the end of May. So I'm not feeling so secure these days. Luckily, I've never counted security to be a god worth trusting anyway, so it could be worse. Still there is real stress.

So I check this cactus everyday, to see if it's blooming. It's not, but the buds continue to swell. It will bloom.

I find this encouraging.

So I give thanks to the God of prickly, blooming things, that I have them as a sign and a reminder: Something beautiful is coming.

(This is always true, but doggone it if I don't need the reminder!)

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