I’ve always called it ‘heather’ but apparently the sixty-or-so kinds of Ericacece grown here in BC aren’t true heathers or heath at all. I think this one is ‘Erica’, since it blooms in spring, unlike the closely related genus ‘Calluna’ which blooms in summer or fall. Around here, because it resembles heath, it’s called ‘native heather’, and it does well as long as we provide the ideal conditions.
Don’t we all? I mean, don’t we tend to flourish when everything in our lives is the way we like it? It’s easier to smile when children behave, there are no unpleasant interruptions in our schedules, the mail brings a royalty cheque instead of another rejection, and somebody remembered to take out the garbage Tuesday morning before the truck rumbled past the house.
Unfortunately, as my heather shrubs have discovered, life doesn’t always give us what we’d prefer. In their present location, while the soil is suitably acidic, these plants aren’t getting enough sunlight, and there’s way too much moisture. After struggling for the past decade in this location they’re getting leggy, and have only a few blossoms. I’d relocate them, but there isn’t a better spot anywhere else on the property.
The alternative is to amend the soil so it will drain faster, and hope they eventually adapt to the inadequate light. It’s that, or let them die and replace them with something more suited to the conditions.
What does that suggest for us when we’re struggling to cope with our perhaps less-than-desirable situations? As writers, if we aren’t content with the status quo, I suspect we either need to move in a different direction to achieve the desired goal, or change our expectations. In other words, adapt. Or we can give up altogether and look elsewhere for fulfillment.
I can procrastinate when it comes to the future of my heather plants, but I love my writing too much to jeopardize my publication dreams. However, I just might have to approach them with a different attitude. If they are to survive, they’re going to require more TLC than I’ve provided so far!
Has your writing journey progressed as you expected? What might you have to do (or what did you do) differently to reach your goals?
~ ~ ~