“Your vision will become clear only when you look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.”

~ Carl Jung

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Worth the Wait

Heavenly Blue Morning Glories are among my favorite flowers.  Every spring somewhere around the 15th of April after the danger of frost, I plant seeds.  Now I am really not a seed kind of a girl.  I prefer full grown plants that will quickly come into their own in the garden, but it is hard to find Morning Glory plants and I do love them.  So, every year I plant the seeds at the base of an iron trellis that leads into my screen porch.  And then I wait.  I wait through the summer.  The little purple Morning Glories come up quickly and bloom with abandon.  And I wait.  Late in the summer I begin to wonder why I bother with planting the seeds.  Thoughts like “They aren’t going to bloom.  I shouldn’t bother planting them.  It’s no use, not worth it.” begin, as each weekend I look for them.

Sometime in September I begin to get a flower or two each weekend.  And then as October rolls around it is as if the Morning Glories know that their time is limited.  They’d better hurry.  Frost is coming. And so the show begins.  Next week we are expecting frost in the mountains of North Georgia.  This is likely the last weekend for Morning Glories.  It is as if they know. 

I have thought a lot about these little flowers this month.  My yearly experience with them mirrors my own experience in so many areas of my life.  I want the quick instantaneous pay off.  I don’t want to wait.  Recently my husband shared a news story about the Stanford Marshmallow Experiment (1972), conducted by Prof. Walter Mischel, at Stanford University, California.   Mischel and his researchers put a marshmallow in front of children and told them that if they would wait 20 minutes before eating it they could have two.  Most could not wait.  The researchers have followed these children and learned that the ones who could wait, who could delay gratification, became better adjusted, more dependable persons as they made their way through life.

I think I could have waited the 20 minutes for the marshmallow; but, maybe it’s only because marshmallows are not my favorites, unless of course they are coconut marshmallows roasted over a fire on a s’more made with Bahlsen Choco Leibniz dark chocolate cookies.  Definitely wouldn’t make the 20 minutes for that marshmallow.

I am grateful for the lesson from these beautiful flowers I love so much.  Some things are worth the effort and the wait.