*I originally wrote this post back in 2017- but its’ message is current and I wanted to share it here*
Which carrot are you?
Last summer we planted some carrots in our garden. We spaced them out evenly and made sure they each had the same amount of soil and water. We cared for them by watering and pulling up any weeds that may have popped up to steal the nutrients away from our crop. It was a long couple of months being patient and waiting for the right time to pull up our harvest.
We got impatient a time or two and pulled one or two up here and there, but they were never the size we wanted or expected. So we waited more…
Until yesterday when it seemed fit to finally pull up our remaining crop for a dinner I was preparing. To my amazement, they were all different in size! None was like the other. You’d pull up one and it would be a really nice straight one and then you’d pull up the one right next to it and it would only be a couple of inches long.
The tops of the carrots all matched in height, their greenery was long and luscious, a deceiving outward appearance and not at all a real testament to what lies beneath.
It was a suspenseful moment in time pulling up all the carrots. A rewarding time, a “pulling of straws” if you will.
As I washed and sized up the harvest I laid them side by side. The biggest carrot next to the smallest. I wondered how two carrots could be completely opposite, yet had grown in the same elements; given the same amount of water, sun and attention. Two carrots who looked identical on the outside, were so different on the inside.
I began to get deep. I do that sometimes.
I thought about the adversities that one carrot can come into contact with. Carrots need a deep space to grow big and long, a hard accomplishment for a carrot when grown in soil above a land mass made of hard lava rock. Clearly they all had faced the harsh reality of the solid lava rocks below. A small carrot root is no match against it. So why, again I pondered, was one so much bigger and stronger than its counter?
I can’t speak for the carrots, but I can take a guess. Ready?
The longest and biggest carrot we pulled up was pulled up from between the lava rock cracks. It had found a way, underneath the soil and lava rock, to grow to its full potential.
Life is like this. People are like this.
On the outside you may all look the same, but on the inside, deep down beneath the surface is where your strength lies. We are all faced with challenges, lava rocks per say. Some of us choose to quit growing because we think that there is no more room. We see the obstacle and find it immovable, so we stay. We slow down our growth and stay where we think is our limit. We feel safe there because, hey, this just might be the end of the road. So we give up growing without even trying.
While some of us don’t give up. We see our lava rock and we laugh at it. We search for a hole, for a sliver, for a crack of light… because sometimes that’s all we need to grow to our next level, and we aim our roots and we push through it. We push through our battles, we push through our hard places, we push because we know if we can just find one open space, we can flourish.
So, I ask again…
Which carrot are you?
Life is short, make it sweet!