There are flowers in our backyard that, except when it rains, I watered twice a day. These flowers are orchids of violet, white, and yellow orange colors. There’s something in flowers that’s making me feel better, light, and joyful. It’s like a vitamin for my soul.
My toddler loves the flowers, too. I saw him many times watering them himself. And then, one time, he came to show me a flower he had just picked up. I told him, “Wow this is a beautiful flower, son. But you should have better left that alone in there while it blooms.”
He just smiled at me, obviously not understanding what I’m saying. I saw my own reflection in his eyes. My son is a flower that grows and blooms through my nurturing. I could give him my love and care, but he must be left alone in his best.
But why did I bring this topic up here? It is because I saw something in the flower (represented by my son) that could show me (fatherhood) where I need to heal, but not for me to expect him to become a working partner. My son must be so much absorbed in the full-time work of becoming himself as he tries to unfold his life according to the inner directives he was born with.
I must allow him to do his work, to blossom at his best as a flower. I, as a gardener, must keep from interfering with his work while I’m moving forward with my own. I can only nurture him the best way I can but the flower must be left alone as it blooms.
Most fathers are entrenched in their own view of the world. They ignore or refuse to think of their child-rearing problems as indications of healing, that something must be done to make things straight for that matter. Instead, what they often saw was a disrespectful, uncooperative child by whom they thought was making life difficult for them. What these fathers have failed to see was that their children could be a light for them if they let them.