If you plant a Japanese bamboo seed today, it will take 7 years to grow and only a few months to develop.
During this time, it grows only downwards. Its growth is invisible on the outside. It is taking root. It is going deep inside itself. It is preparing to be the fastest-growing plant in the whole plant kingdom after these years.
The way the bamboo is developing makes me reflect on my own personal growth, and how invisible the process can seem to us if we don't look back every now and then and acknowledge our accomplishments.
Seven years ago I was, without realising it, sowing bamboo seeds. I was sowing seeds about my own identity, my life purpose, my feminine energy, my healing path, my intimate and social relationships, my spiritual connection... Although I showed myself as a joyful, enthusiastic, happy woman...there were many parts of me that needed love, clarity and compassion... and, above all, full trust in the process and in myself.
During its first 7 years, the bamboo generates a complex root system that allows it to sustain the growth that will follow. In the process it is nourished with vitamins, water, light... and, of course, care that requires a lot of dedication, patience and love.
On this path of personal growth, the challenges I encountered gave me the opportunity to cultivate the greatest learnings. From being away from my family and friends of origin, to living disconnected from my profession, to feeling incomplete and “not enough” as a woman, to feeling strange and misunderstood as an individual. Nourishing myself properly saved my existence, starting with the essentials... the nutrition that my body needed at the time, the movement and the pause that recharged my energy; continuing by taking care of myself through the relationships and people that fuelled my soul and the spaces I dedicated to being in touch with myself and my emotions.
At the end of the seventh year, the bamboo begins to develop. It is ready, it has undergone profound internal growth and can grow up to 32 metres.
And even if we cut it up to six times, the bamboo will continue to grow, to show us yet another lesson: its great capacity for resilience, for overcoming the wounds of life. Its life lies in its roots.
I don't know if I am ready to grow as fast as the bamboo does at the end of those 7 years. What I do know is that I have managed to expand my knowledge of myself, increase the learning that makes me feel more fulfilled and freer, develop my intuition, and connect with the sensation of feeling stronger, more capable and prepared to face the next challenges.
On that path, I will continue creating a bright bamboo forest, with all the ingredients that lead from an invisible path to a shared path of discoveries.
And now I ask you...
Where were you 7 years ago? What were you growing? Who were you at that time?
What or who have you leaned on during this time of growth? What have been your sources of vitamins? How do you nourish your body, your mind, and your heart?
What are your roots made of? What connects you to your inner self? What has been your greatest learning on this path of inner growth?