As I wandered around the Botanic Gardens looking at all the different beauties of the world- I was struck by this picture. A Simple sage bush with yellow thistles, what could possibly be so emotionally stirring about this? For me, sage bushes hit home in the sense that they bring my mind back to a place that feels like home.
My home is technically in the suburbs of Philadelphia, but I always felt a home sensation in the mountains of Colorado. I have been going to the mountains here ever since I was born and have vivid images in my mind of the scenery there. Because of the altitude, sage bushes are one of the few things that can grow and survive. Their particular scent fills the thin air and creates an aroma that I will always hold onto.
So, when I came across these simple yet elegant sash bushes at the Botanic Gardens, I first was overcome with joy because their aroma had hit me and taken my mind back to the mountains where I so longed to be. Memories of running up the hills behind my cabin, jumping and dodging the sage bushes flooded my mind. I was overcome with happiness as I stood in the middle of the Botanic Gardens. A smile came across my face, and the people around me looked at me like I was crazy because why would a girl be smiling at a sage bush. There is nothing particularly attractive about sage bushes, but they mean so much to me.
I was allowing my emotional wellness to grow by accepting all the different emotions that hit me. Yes, first was happiness as I thought about being a little girl again running through the bushes. But shortly after I was filled with sadness as I thought about my mom picking some sage every year to take home with us. My mom loves to sage our house, which is one method of terminating any bad spirits that might be residing at home. Picturing my mom picking the bland colored sage and putting them in a plastic bag for the flight home made me miss her. Normally I would over look this feeling, as to not seem weak or homesick. For some reason, I accepted that a sage bush could trigger sadness inside of me, and I allowed my mind to dwell for a few moments on the feeling.
Thankfully, my emotional state quickly changed from sadness to being content as I realized that while I missed my mom picking the sage, I was relieved to be surrounded by the aroma and the feeling of home kicked in.
Written and Photographed by Sophia Elek, WLLC 2015-2016