Smiles Come in all Sorts of Packages


Unbeknownst to me, sometimes my People Garden is bigger and better than I imagine.  Back in December, fellow GovLoop blogger, HUD coworker and friend Nicole Willingham sent me this poem from something she saw on Instagram.

“Your mind is a garden,

Your thoughts are the seeds;

You can grow flowers,

Or you can grow weeds.”

She sent me a huge bouquet of smiles, more than she can imagine. You know we all have those tough days, not feeling well, home situations, stress at work, etc.  Then, you have those moments where you realize that everything you have been working towards has some sort of purpose and you have to step back and put things into perspective.

It is about the choices we make.  As a part of my own Veteran journey and through some crucial conversations, the VA asked me to write my story and it was published last week.  Out of writing my story, I’ve been told that I possess such “strength… encouragement, uplifting, and inspiring”.  Others want to share my story and by all means I believe that it is meant to be shared and learned from. Not because I think I have done anything spectacular by any means. I believe it is because I did not give up. I did not give up on me or my family.  I made choices that kept me from the path of failure and onto the road to something better.

Read more here.

What I can also tell you about this in life, is that “who we are” is not about the “where we are” or our station in life but the who we have become and what we will allow ourselves to become. It is about our relationships that we cultivate and if you do not have people and relationships then who is in your garden with you? Who supports you when the chips are down and you’ve lost your job? Are you sitting in a blank field full of weeds or are you tilling your soil to grow some flowers?

The choice is yours – appreciate the seeds sown your way. The bouquet will blossom when you need it the most!

Eva Fulton is part of the GovLoop Featured Blogger program, where we feature blog posts by government voices from all across the country (and world!). To see more Featured Blogger posts, click here.

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Eva Fulton

I’m in touch with at least one person in the photo besides myself. Our unit then was a very tight group and they all loved the pic when my Mom sent it to me in Saudi. If I needed to get permission, I’m sure they would have no issues with it. We are still trying to connect with other members as we don’t know where they have gone to in life.

Russell Irving

Eva, your posting here should be read by everyone. My family has over decades and still endures health and other crisis that are close to unbearable. People often ask how I can seem so positive despite it all. It’s attitude. And the occasional cry.
But as you so aptly point out, Eva, our choices make a huge difference.
I wish you the best, Eva. I thank you for sharing.

Eva Fulton

thank you for responding Russell. I’ve learned over the years that it isn’t me carrying my load, God carries my load as it is sometimes more than I can bear. With that in mind, when someone else carries that weight, no matter what your belief, then we can make wiser choices. My story isn’t about me, it is about all of us and the seeds we sow to those in our People Garden. Feel free to share….

Nicole Willingham

I’m behind on blog reading! I’m glad you liked the poem, and I’m happy for your opportunity with the VA. Keep up the good work and the positive attitude!