I didn’t recognize the symbolism of growing an avocado tree at the same time I was beginning my journey of becoming an author. I simply loved avocados. Four years later as I set a new seed on my windowsill at the same time I was stressing over how to market Mystic I realized my avocado trees represented change and growth from within myself. They were my reminder that even though I could envision the giant tree that would fill my yard it wasn’t going to grow overnight. I needed to care for it every day while enjoying each day and know that eventually my seed would be a majestic tree.

Here’s how to grow an avocado tree.

av. seeds from 08 or 09 that grew into trees

This picture was taken the summer of 2008.

First: Plant a seed.

The summer of 2008 I felt such a sense of freedom and of new beginnings. I had decided to switch careers from teaching to writing. I knew it was a risk and I faced scrutiny from others who thought I was simply becoming lazy, or that writing a novel was easy. I knew better. I knew what was right for me. As soon as I devoted time to my craft the ideas flowed. I wrote daily and began taking care of myself as well as my family. I was a better, more present, mom and wife because I was embarking on the right path. I had no idea how we were going to make ends meet without our second income and I had no idea how long it was really going to take me to publish Mystic. I simply let go and trusted that if I followed my heart everything would be okay.

Second: Wait for signs of growth

av tree one root 2008 2009

It takes a month to two months for the seed to sprout. Be sure to give the seed fresh water daily.

There were days when I questioned my decision just as I questioned whether my avocado seed would ever turn into a tree. I started a blog in September 2008. I continued working on Mystic, attending writing conferences and I wrote several picture book drafts. Sue Monk Kidd became my author of choice. I delved into her books as well as Eckert Tolle and sought self discovery. I was growing even though some days the fear of failure was great. I kept on. The joy that was sprouting inside me was a constant reminder to keep going.

Next: Water and nurture.

av. tree roots 2008 2009

I began to see life as a privilege. I learned the importance of gratitude. Every success from having a closer relationship with my family, to listening to others tell me I inspired them through my writing, helped me break through the doubts and fears that still crept in. I was stronger.

Then: Plant your tree and watch it grow.

Av. tree picture from June 2012
June 2012

It took four years to go from the seed on my windowsill to a beautiful tree in my yard. In those years I worked on Mystic. I watched my children progress through school. We explored Barcelona as a family. I reconnected with high school friends on Facebook and met authors and illustrators who shared my passion for writing for children.

Finally: Your tree is growing. Keep nurturing it and remember to see its beauty.

av tree  March 2013

 March 2013

To do anything well it takes time. The magic begins when the seed is planted and the excitement bursts with each new root or branch grown. It’s the days in between that count the most because those are the days that make the others possible. Those are the days you have to believe in yourself. Believe that one day you’ll sit under the shade of your giant avocado tree and know that you added beauty to this wonderous world.

The inspiration for this post came from: Kristen Lamb’s Blog

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