What we can learn about life from an Agave plant
After wrapping up our first ever International Annuary Day in January, my wife (and Life & Times co-founder) Jennifer and I headed from St. Louis, Missouri to southern Arizona to celebrate the warmth of the southwest, her birthday, and our 10th wedding anniversary – a year and a half late.
Now that we are headed back home 30,000 feet in the air, I thought I’d capture something I’ve learned on this trip.
While visiting some family friends we learned something unique about the Agave plant. We had heard of it before but didn’t know one very interesting part of its story. I’m not a botanist, so pardon my ignorance, but the story I was told was just too beautiful to not share.
See the Agave grows in a low prickly bush up until the final weeks of its life, which is when it grows this huge stalk, generally around 8-10 feet tall which shoots out tiny branches that push out dozens of flowers. Days later the whole thing dies, bush and all. It knows that it is dying and sends out this beautiful monument (and the seeds that spread to grow more agave) and stays erect for years after.
Our friends were using one of those large stalks as their holiday tree, wrapping lights around it and clipping little painted wooden birds to the branches.
The whole idea of “going out with beauty” was inspiring to me. Now, we are not all guaranteed to know when we are going to die, but we do know that it is inevitable. How can we go out with beauty? Can people have a grand finale too? Can the end of our life be life-giving for the next generation – leave behind seeds to grow beyond our lifetime?
My goal is to help all of us find and share this personal beauty; something that makes others go “wow, how amazing.” Not in a fireworks and pomp and circumstance kind of way, but in a way that builds a lasting legacy to your life here on earth. I certainly don’t have a perfect recipe for this yet, but I will strive for ways for each of us to have our Agave moment.
May you have a safe and meaningful journey.
Co-founder of Life & Times