There’s a camellia just out our front door. That’s on purpose. One of my most pleasant memories as a child is stepping out the front door and staring at the beautiful red flowers on the camellia bush. There was something soothing and peaceful about the blossoms that calmed my tender, young, damaged soul. By this time much had happened and was happening that brought to me a need for comforting. The memory of the camellia is simple and incorrupt. What can a child that young bring to the meaning of such an experience? Not much. The memory, however, is keen enough that to this day I can’t go out my door during the bloom season without being deeply moved.
Simple beauty is often overlooked as a way forward for the wounded and disabled among us, no matter our age. No matter the level of our understanding. No matter the nature of our hurt. A walk through a garden or even the brief meditation of a single flower is frequently enough to bring us solace. Once, as an adult, when pressure seemed about to break me, an afternoon at the Butchart Gardens in Victoria, British Colombia, provided me with the perspective and sense of equilibrium that I needed.