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THE FAMILY CHRISTMAS CACTUS


On a warm and sunny afternoon in September of 2014 my wife and our 4 year old grandson were having fun playing kickball in the front yard. An errant trajectory sent the blue sphere sailing in to the carport where it squarely hit the family Christmas Cactus plant breaking off one of the stems. The plant had been handed down from my mother-in-law prior to her 2010 death. A tradition had developed in our home to see how close to Christmas the buds and the full flowers would appear.

As more of an experiment than a rescue the piece on the floor of the carport was placed in a small flower pot of its own. Nothing special--just old potting soil and dirt and a bit of water. It was placed in the backyard against the north side of the house. We had early cold spells with frost and a very dry October. The struggling survivor was treated like the other plants with occassional water and a sheet to protect it from the frost.

For the Thanksgiving holiday the new little plant was brought indoors to be a decoration. The mother plant remained in the carport with all eyes awaiting the buds that might come any time. To our surprise the stem that had just been pushed in to the dirt budded and then bloomed first! The beauty and detail exceeded all expectations.

What we learned from this story of our Family Christmas Cactus is that life goes on even when we are separated from our mother plant. Whether the separation is a result of death, adoption, accident or choice life can go on. We can bloom and become what God needs us to be. We are not limited by where we came from or the conditions of our separation. We have a potential that is mirrored by our Family Christmas Cactus--both of them now.

Submitted By Patrick Lightcap

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