The energy of spring holds lessons in how to rock the power of your vulnerability.

Vulnerability is a feeling most of us try to minimize. Our culture does not hold much regard for the tender and fragile parts of ourselves. We are encouraged to show strength and resilience against all odds. But the roots of this strength lie in the very thing we try to run from, our own tenderness.

Today I learned a great lesson in the tenderness it takes to be present to my own growth.

Today is the first day of spring in the Chinese astrological calendar. We are transitioning from the water element into the wood. We are going from the great mystery into the manifestation of newness. This is the upward rising of a new cycle.
I am intimately aware of the power of the wood element. It is the upward rising energy of new growth. It is the manifestation of potential into form. It is the excitement and drive that is needed to break through the tough outer shell of our seed of potential. It is the focus and determination that uses our creative power brings forth change. It is the forward thinking determination to make things better, bring justice, create new life.
As I settled down into the depth of this energy, looking forward to the titillating thrill of newness, I felt instead, deep vulnerability. I felt the tears begin to well in my eyes as the hidden fears and reservations bubbled up around me. I felt the grief for the loss of my shell of protection, which confined me to just potential, but gave me a feeling of safety and shelter too. I was confronted with the storm of my shadows.

What if I am not good enough? What if I don’t have what it takes? What if this doesn’t work? What if I’m really not all that? What if I do all this work and nothing comes of it?

This is also the wood energy. 
 
New wood is tender. The seed germinates, but at the beginning you do not yet have deep roots into the nourishing, comforting, sustaining  soil. You do not yet have leaves pulling in the warmth, strength and reflection of your own power and greatness. In the beginning you are just a small and tender shoot aware that the next big wind could knock you down, that you could be trod upon and crushed, that the big rains can feed you but also pound you down into pulp. 

 

Wood energy is also a leap of faith. 

Honor that tenderness. Be willing to be present in the fears. Open up to the darkness of the soil surrounding you. However deep you can let your feelings go, your roots will follow. The strength of the oak tree relies on the depth of it’s roots. Be willing to go deep and have faith you will find nourishment there. Knowing the truth of your fears and moving forward anyway is the foundation of the resilience of the wood element. If you can find stillness in your own resistance to growth, the things that may hold you back become the same things that hold you tight. 
 

Soon your leaves will feel the warmth of the sun. You will find the energy to grow. Your tenderness will become your strength.

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