Close up yellow rose

Image via Wikipedia

I first found this brilliant piece on Paolo Coelho’s blog.  It was originally written by Timothy Gallwey and comes from his influential book, “The Inner Game of Tennis.”

When we plant a rose seed in the earth, we notice it is small, but we do not criticise it as rootless and stemless.  We treat it as a seed, giving it the water and nourishment required of a seed.

When it first shoots up out of the earth, we don’t condemn it as immature and underdeveloped, nor do we criticise the buds for not being open when they appear.  We stand in wonder at the process taking place, and give the plant the care it needs at each stage of its development.

The rose is a rose from the time it is a seed to the time it dies. Within it, at all times, it contains its whole potential. It seems to be constantly in the process of change: Yet at each state, at each moment, it is perfectly all right as it is.

A flower is not better when it blooms than when it is merely a bud; at each stage it is the same thing — a flower in the process of expressing its potential.

As I read this, I couldn’t help but think of my own children.

Do I underestimate their potential?

Am I too critical of them while they are still learning?

Do I look too far ahead in their development, wishing that they were older, wiser or more mature?

Or do I see them as a flower, not yet fully bloomed, but still beautiful, remarkable and full of unimaginable promise?

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