Why Cherry Blossoms?
I’m often asked what my obsession is with Cherry Blossoms. They are all over my office, my screensavers, scents in my home. I even have seeds I am going to attempt to grow. Why I have chosen to call my coaching program Your Time To Blossom
True is that Cherry Blossoms have been present in my life since I was a child, but I never knew the significance of it. I can see even today, the three large cherry blossom trees behind my childhood home. But it took a little old man, a cup of hot chocolate and the lowest part of my life to accept their importance.
So What Happened?
14 years ago, I had just had the weekend from hell, it ended with my now- ex-husband going to jail on a traffic ticket. What I hadn’t been talking about were the frequent beatings, the living in fear, dressing, speaking and acting only how he would have me act. Everything was meant to be perfect for him. I will tell you I almost died in that relationship. I have stories of being choked, smothered, knife held to my throat and my head was pounded into a concrete floor until I lost consciousness. The traffic ticket was engineered by a friend, they wanted to buy me an hour to escape, what we didn’t know was he had outstanding warrants and he was taken to jail.
It was Monday, I had gone to work, and I was sobbing constantly. Telling customers it was allergies. Then a little old Japenese gentleman, who was a regular came into the store. After one look at me and this quiet, almost whisper that was his normal voice changed.
He told me to come with him, I had every excuse not to go next door and sit with him, and then he yelled at me to come with him NOW!
My assistant manager sent me with him, practically pushing me out of the door and we sat down.
My hands wrapped around the hot chocolate, he asked me again and again what was wrong. I kept telling him nothing, can you relate to that? I’m fine, its nothing we do as women more often than not. Eventually, I told him everything, the beatings, the name-calling, the verbal and physical abuse I had suffered at the hands of my husband. Also that I was ready to go down to the jail and bail him out, begging forgiveness.
This soft-spoken man looked at me and said “You are Sakura”
“you are the sakura tree, you Cherry Blossom”
so what I am a tree now, I’m telling you that moment was so confusing. I was feeling barely human, but to be told I was a tree. That was a bit of a shock
He started to tell me the story.
“Come winter, the cherry blossom dies, it loses its flowers, the bark goes grey and it looks dead to the world”
“GREAT, now I am a dead tree!” I already felt like I had nothing to live for, I was feeling so much worse at this point
“the children climb on its dead bark, breaking its limbs, war tears through it. The cold of winter makes its branches fragile”
At this point, I remember feeling twice as bad as I had nothing to live for. I believe he saw my despair because he started to smile from ear to ear. Yes, I thought he was coming across a little on the cruel side.
“You see, Spring comes and the Cherry Blossom does something magical. All winter, with no blossoms, grey and dying bark. It’s digging it’s roots deep into the soil, pulling up water and growing in strength. In Spring it is more beautiful with more flowers than the year before. The Cherry Blossom survives war, winter, famine and so much more because it focuses on growing strong from within.”
I probably had a look of awe at this point
“Child, you are Sakura, this is your winter, you will get strong, you will grow and you will have spring again” That was the moment I had hope, that I could be reborn so to speak, by growing strong within.
So you see, I have Cherry Blossoms as part of my brand! My inner meaning because it reminds me every day, that I can and I will get stronger no matter the issue. I just have to get through my winter and get to Spring. So when you think you are in Winter, get to spring! It was also the start of me realizing that I was in a severe domestic abuse relationship.
Do you have anything that has meaning for you?