Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Chronic illness and gardening: Learning to Grow

Decelles FlamingoI’ve heard it said that, “as we grow, we learn.” Well, I’m finding out things a bit differently: “As I learn, I grow.”

Lupus requires that I don’t spend a great deal of time outdoors, especially during the sunniest times of the day, so I have become quite fond of “gardening” indoors, raising African violets. As I’ve delved more into the particulars of these lovely plants, I’ve discovered many things that apply to my life with chronic illness and pain, too. Among them:


1) Plants will grow if given the right combination of light, water, and, occasionally, food. But to become truly lovely, from time to time, they will need to be shaped and pruned.

How like life that is!  What comes from our darkest moments, our most-pruned times, is often the greatest of blessings!

2) As plants age, they lose their baby leaves and smaller blossoms and, under the right conditions and with the right care, they mature into breathtaking beauty.

Once we accept our aging, and learn to “grow” into it, we just might look and act our very, very best!

3) The process of growing takes time, but is well worth it.

I constantly need to be reminded, “Patience, patient!” and tending to my African violets is perfect just for that!


4) The variety of African violets is astounding – yet each is love-ly in its own right.

Just like each of us, we are all so very different, but very much the same in our worthiness for God’s love.

5)  Flowers in bloom beg to be shared!

I’m always eager to share pictures or gift plants to people; sharing these treasures is part of the fun of growing. It is the same with the joy I feel in my faith – Light, God’s love, and all good things from Him are simply too wonderful not to share.

Blessings for the day,


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