Picking Flowers Over Fear

2024 inspiration motivation perspective seasonal spring Apr 19, 2024
Samples of botanical artwork that uses pressed flowers, an art form known as Oshibana.

Spring is breezing on by! It seems like just yesterday we were nice and cozy in the quiet embrace of winter… but the birds are singing, the wind is blowing, and our seeds are taking root. Nature is moving in its effortless perpetuity, and I don’t know about you, but I am feeling the drive to take action. Mother Nature waits for no one!

My biggest goal for this year is to forgive my past and make peace with it in order to move forward and invite fresh perspectives. This was at the forefront of my mind as I created my vision board. I had no idea what Spring had in store at the time; all I knew was that it would be the time to get moving. And for me, that ended up being as literal as it gets.

I am now settling into a cute new apartment, living next door to a dear friend and marveling at the sunsets that slowly exhale their beautiful hues between the loblolly trees off my back porch. What began as a difficult, stressful, and drawn-out process has now settled into a new beginning, the fresh perspective I set out to find on the first day of Spring.

Suddenly, I have already greeted another opportunity knocking at my door. Or rather, I am faced with the current mess that is my dining room table. Moving is a lot.

As I work on clearing my inner and outer spaces, I look forward to digging up my old high school yearbooks. They are filled with fond memories as well as stray flower petals and herb leaves from past projects. Pressing flowers has always felt sacred to me, a simple yet significant practice.

Specifically as an art form, flower pressing originated in Japan and is known as ‘Oshibana’. The term refers to using dried flowers to create a whole picture, such as botanicals placed together to create an image of a landscape. 16th Century Samurai would also practice Oshibana to promote patience, concentration and a connection to nature.

As trade increased with Japan in the 1800’s, so did the Western fascination with Oshibana. It became a favourite pastime, especially amongst women in the Victorian West. Flowers were believed to have hidden depths and meanings, and were often used as an alternative language to express themselves in an otherwise strict and conservative Victorian society. As a result, pressing them became a treasured hobby, preserving sentimental meanings and memories. Notably, Gertrude Tredwell created a collection of scrapbooks of pressed botanicals from her travels in the White Mountains during 1865, which can still be viewed at her family home in New York. (source: little pressed flower)

Princess Grace of Monaco was a notable creator in the art of Oshibana and helped promote the art form with her book My Book of Flowers in October of 1980. The art form lives on, fluctuating in popularity yet withstanding in beauty and significance.

Now, I know I can’t ignore that mess on my table forever. After all, it serves as my creative space for all that potential in my craft closet, and I refuse to let anything else take up residence in that space.

This mess symbolizes the hardships of this transition. Metaphorically (and physically), I’m holding on to too much. Hardships come with the risk that we will hear a voice of fear and give in to it, thinking we’re not smart or good or worthy enough to see things through; and that fear can be so familiar that we mistake it for our comfort zone.

In this week’s Tip Tuesday, Katie emphasized the importance of blooming where we are planted. Even after hardships pass, it can be so easy to continue dwelling on them. In a separate conversation, Katie also shared some wise words with me: We as women carry so much throughout our lives that sometimes the most difficult thing you can do is let something go.

So in order to bloom where I am freshly rooted, in order to let go of things that no longer serve me and grow past that fear, I need to clear that mess off my table - metaphorically and physically. I am ready to bloom and thrive, to take charge of my space and make room for my creative endeavors. Yes, I am absolutely responsible for this mess. And yes, I am absolutely capable of cleaning it up and reclaiming my space. It’s been a whirlwind of a transition and it is also the perfect time to keep moving forward. Thanks to my vision board, my goals are still fresh! And thanks to Spring, so is the momentum of inspired action.

As we continue to take action this season, I hope taking responsibility for your messes and lovingly cleaning them up invites empowerment into your life. May you take comfort in clearing your physical and metaphorical spaces to make room for endless potential. And may we as creative women never lose sight of what it takes to bloom where we are planted, pressing flowers along the way instead of listening to that voice of fear.

With loving encouragement,

Caia Claire

Virtuosa Society Digital Media Manager

Ladies of Klamath Falls, Oregon - mark your calendars! We are planning a summer solstice hike on Thursday, June 20th to celebrate the transition of the seasons. Sign up for our newsletter for updates!

The next Maestra Masterclass is on the horizon for Fall of 2024. Keep an eye out for more details as we prepare to learn and grow under the guidance of the amazing Georgene Rice!

This Maestra is a triple threat of her own: a celebrated radio host, speaker, and gospel singer with decades of experience. Get inspired with this fabulous interview on Katie's blog!