I dedicate this to my daughter Jordan, the greatest and most courageous acorn seed I have ever known.
Dear Magnificent Forest,
The acorn seed, though unassuming, has everything it needs inside of it to grow into a magnificent oak tree.
All the gray matter inside the seed is only awoken into life when it makes a Connection to the world outside of itself, otherwise it is completely inert, static, and frozen in its original state.
This is a crucial step in the process of the seed if it wants to grow and/or be anything different than what it is right now in this moment.
It must break open the walls of its shell, exposing itself to the outside world. This is the only thing it knows to do to survive, making itself vulnerable to the elements of an unforeseen, chaotic unpredictable world.
Yet this is the leap of faith it must take if it wants to evolve and grow into the highest, most abundant expression of itself: the magnificent oak tree.
We too have these same walls around us. We too have built a hard exterior through time. We too have a fear of letting go, of trusting. We fear that once we let those walls down there will be nothing left of us. We will cease to exist and die.
It’s too scary a thought. We think of a million things that we’ll have to change and of the people we’ll anger in the process, that it all becomes overwhelming. It all seems so scary. So we stay settle. We stay stuck, frozen in the same pattern day after day and wonder if it will ever get better.
Until… we are forced to do something. Because the pain of doing nothing is greater than the pain of doing something.
So what happens next?
You go to that dark place, just like the acorn when it gets pushed into the soil. It’s that place where you have never been before. It’s scary, it’s unfamiliar, it’s uncharted territory and you don’t know what to do. It is truly the most difficult part of the journey.
But if you can go there into the soil, that is where you will find the nutrients are and where you will be nourished and cared for. If you will only let go a little more and allow the process to go just one more step…
Pain brings storms and cold nights. Clouds bring tears and rain, rain and more rain. Through these days and nights of finally Allowing the process to take over, these elements wash over you. They work ON you, then THROUGH you, and then FOR you.
The seed, like you, starts to soften in the dark, moist, nutrient-rich soil. Here’s where the courage pays off. Here is where the perseverance pays off. From your commitment to the unknown and your leap of faith, the walls finally start to soften and break down. This is where the light comes in.
Through this opening is where the exchange of minerals takes place, where knowledge is gathered and shared. Momentum and courage builds. You are now in connection with something greater than yourself. You are in the flow of life, yet it is still not over. The journey has evolved to the next level.
Now you are about to embark on the most exhilarating, most terrifying experience of all. Out of the seed sprouts new, fresh green life. The tiny fragile new symbol of connection between itself and something greater. Here is the trust, the will, the momentum, the unwavering moment. The test.
This is when the tiny green seedling pokes its head out of the soil into the light for the first time. It is proclaiming a new identity. Look at me! I did it!
We, too at this point leave ourselves open to new exposure, new criticisms, new failures. People may want you to return to the way you were.
However, the seed can never go back to its sheltered safe life, that frozen existence that it once had. It has a whole new momentum and purpose. It has become useful and beneficial in ways it never could as a simple seed. By becoming its highest best expression, a tree, the seed will be a home to animals, will provide shade, will be seen as an object of beauty and part of a vast ecosystem. In essence, it will be a viable, purposeful, living entity.
When you first sprout, remember it is a fragile time. To take care of yourself, you must be gentle on yourself. You are in a vulnerable stage. The sun can be hot and the world can appear harsh, but remember Who You Are and what you are made of. And most importantly, where you came from.
Know that you were meant to be soft. In fact, the more soft and pliable you are, the easier it will be to grow. The easier it will be for the nutrients you need to get into you.
Allow yourself to stop believing your strength comes from keeping it all behind a wall. Cracking open is the only way to receive and let the light come in.
Know that your growth depends on you reaching out and connecting to the outside world, the elements are crucial. You need them. We all need the gifts that others have come here to offer.
You have all the right stuff inside of you, but it means nothing if you can’t use it. The inside of the seed, is just unused grey matter until the shell is broken open to allow it to reach out into the dark, into the unknown and connect with something greater.
We’re not meant to be alone, people. We are social creatures meant to be with one another in order to facilitate our growth potential.
Nutrients are all out there. Break down the walls and reach out. Don’t be so stubborn and hard shelled. Don’t think you know it all or have to. Stop thinking you’re different or better or not good enough. Stop the excuses from stunting your growth. Your life and the life of others depends on it. Its your choice. Either grow into your potential or become food for the squirrels.
The forest was meant to thrive. What would happen if there were only a few trees?
Are You Ready?
As you take each step I will be there reminding you of your Magnificence, and I will continue to do so, until you are able to see it in yourself. © Copyright. Jennifer Annenberg Productions. 2013. All Rights Reserved. This publication may not be reproduced under any circumstances without the written consent of Jennifer Annenberg.
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