|Dresden Window 3|
Back in the fall of 2011, one of the several mysterious things we found in the apartment we rented our first month in Munich was a thirsty little potted plant with large green oval leaves. I wasn't sure what it was, but missing all the plants I had recently I given away, I was happy to water it and make certain it got some sunshine everyday. We knew that the girl who had rented the apartment before us had left in a hurry, not bothering to clean up at all and apparently abandoning this little plant to it's fate. You can see it on the windowsill on the right.
|Würzerstrasse apt., Munich 2011|
As I cared for the little orchid, I was delighted when it started to send out new flowering shoots, I felt quite guilty when I also had to leave it behind when we moved! I hoped that the new apartment owners would think it worth caring for since it was growing and healthy now.
Fast forward to August 2015. We were in Germany again, living in the city of Dresden this time and hoping to find work as English as a Second Language (ESL) teachers. Another window full of orchids in our neighborhood got my attention and I made certain to take more pictures this time.
|White orchids in Dresden|
|Entrance to Öderaner Strasse|
|Restored apartment building, Örderaner Strasse|
|Lovely corner building, Saxoniastrasse|
Second, the orchids are connected in my mind with Germany, especially Dresden. A beautifully unique city that was mostly destroyed in 1945, and yet the people who survived were so determined to move forward, they pulled bricks from the rubble and started to build again. The re-birth of that city is an inspiration to me, like the little abandoned orchid setting out new growth. We have also been essentially starting over, no house to return to, no hoped for job offer, dealing with all the things that didn't work-out how we planned, trying to find our new direction to grow in. I admit, it's been a serious struggle for me not to focus on feeling discouraged and frustrated. We are so grateful for the friends and family who have provided places for us to stay, giving us their bit of "water and sunshine" to keep us going.
|Sketch, minimalist style|
|White orchids with pink outline sketch|
|Dresden Window 1|
|Dresden Window 4|
Figuring out what I could create and share instead of focusing on what I couldn't really helped my state of mind. Like the little orchid, I could encourage my creative side to keep sending out a few green shoots, even if my situation isn't ideal at the moment.
I definitely recommend this strategy if you are feeling discouraged about what you can accomplish too. Consider the story of the orchids and figure out how to keep making some new green growth, no matter how small.
|Bloom where you are transplanted.|