I walked out on the front porch of my house one day and suddenly saw—on the white wooden hand rail less than two feet from my face—a brilliant green gecko undressing. It appeared that her sticky feet were unzipping her entire body, very slowly, until, utterly mesmerized, I saw a new version of herself emerge. A slender body, lithe and flexible, wiggled persistently out of its old self, finally depositing the dry skin like an old set of work clothes dropped to the floor, revealing a glamorous gown of sequined chartreuse beneath. In a long moment of stillness, she took in this fresh version of herself, shuddering to feel the afternoon sun glisten on her newly exposed skin. Finally, she began to move in slow, cautious steps down the railing, and coming upon the holly shrub nearby, leapt into that shiny green world of her own.
Geckoes are known for their regenerative powers, from frequent shedding to voluntarily clipping their own tail when in danger, then regrowing one. What a beautiful image to contemplate at this year's beginning, as I gather up all that I want to shed in my life. How might I unzip those dry, overworked areas of my life and break through with fresh vigor for the year ahead?
The Schumacher fabric we chose for one of our Spring Schumacher X IbuMorocco jackets is called Baracoa, in honor of the Cuban regenerative gecko. I can't resist introducing it here at the year's beginning, the time of shedding and re-emergence. What I know is that the areas of my life which have been neglected in the past year are waiting patiently for me to unzip worn-out patterns of daily routine and let their untapped energies shine in the sun.
There may even be a piece of myself I need to cut off if it is in danger of stealing too much of my time and energy. I can always re-grow it later. That is the power and promise of regeneration, that unstoppable life force of persistently making new. I recently looked down from my work on the screened porch to see this beauty sunning, her tail clipped. I'm not worried about her—she knows how to make herself new.
So do we. Here's to unzipping, sloughing, shedding,…and emerging in our own shining best.