The Meaning of the Sunflower
I’ve always thought sunflowers were a good metaphor for where to place our focus, as sunflowers always turn towards the light. For survivors of any kind of abuse, turning towards the light can seem impossible, as trauma often leaves a person feeling stuck in a pit of darkness, alone, scared, confused, overwhelmed, and hopeless. I’ve learned a lot about trauma over the years, and one of the biggest takeaways has been that waiting for the light to come back as bright as it was before isn’t a good strategy, as we could spend decades waiting for that to happen to no avail. The good news is that we don’t need to wait for the light to come back, in its full brilliance, to come alive and reconnect with life. With each small, nourishing decision we make, that light starts to shine through.
We do this by setting the following four intentions:
We won’t let what happened cause us to end our life.
We won’t let what happened to us ruin our life.
We will use what happened to us for our highest and greatest good.
We will use what happened to us for the highest and greatest good of others.
I’ve always loved sunflowers, and thought this analogy was so fitting for the tone that I wanted to set for everything I do, especially this website.
Even in the darkest of days, sunflowers are always able to find the light and turn towards it. Healing from abuse isn’t about never having dark or bad days, it’s about turning towards and acknowledging everything good and right in our world.
The sunflower is a reminder to turn towards the light, or for us, to turn towards the thoughts, feelings, people, places, and things that nourish you. While we may not be able to control everything that happens to us, we can choose the meaning we assign to these events and what we do with our experience.
The sunflower is a powerful reminder about intention and outcome. When we turn towards the light, we begin to grow.
The sunflower is a powerful reminder that the first step to putting the darkness of abuse behind us, is to turn towards the light. In our situation, the light represents clarity, validation, compassion, and self-love.
You don’t need to have all of the answers, just the determination to turn towards the light and use what happened to you for your highest and greatest good and, in time, for the highest and greatest good of others.