“I was a $5 grocery store rescue back in 2017. This curly-haired lady had just finished shopping and was headed to her car when she stopped the cart and glanced back at me sitting there alone in my pot on the ground, up against a concrete wall in the full harsh sun.
I was looking rather scraggly, so I was doing my best to show off my good side. Before I knew it, she had scooped me up, and we were wheeling back into the store through the exit door. She paid for me, took me to her car and let me sit in the front seat. I was going home!
She found a nice spot in the garden by a fig tree and planted me in the ground. I was really happy there watching the squirrels and dragonflies play, and the lizards loved sunning on my leaves.
My old raggedy foliage was soon replaced by new healthy leaves, and for some reason the lady seemed to be more impressed with the leaves that had formed with holes and slits, so I tried making more of those for her.
All was well until late that August when a massive storm called Hurricane Harvey slowly moved through town leaving over 30 inches of rain in its wake and causing terrible floods throughout the state. I could tell the lady was really stressed and worried, and she even ran out into the pouring rain to pull up some of her succulent plants. It was incredibly scary, even for a tropical plant like me! But thankfully I survived without any real problems.
A few months went by and soon it was winter. No one expected it to get as cold as it did. It was colder than it had been in over 20 years. Everything froze. I froze. Well, the lady thought I was a goner, but I still had some life left in my roots. I could hear her sighs through the soil as she cut back my sad, thawed leaves, but I had to wait a couple more months before I could show her I was still alive.
When I finally pushed out my first new leaf, she patted it gently and cheered even though it didn’t have any of the fancy holes in it. But after I grew a few more leaves, the holes started showing again, and I finally felt back to my normal self.
One day, I saw her packing up all of the potted plants and putting them in her car. Then she came over with a shovel and carefully dug me up and put me in a pretty blue pot. It was a snug fit for all of my roots, but I was comfy enough. We moved to a new house, but she left me in the pot, and not long after we moved to another house.
That winter, another freeze came through town again, and this time it was colder for longer than it had been in decades. The lady tucked me under a blanket in the garage with a space heater and grow lights, but the electricity stopped working after the first day. From what I heard, the whole city and most of the state were without power and water for several days. It was an absolute disaster all around.
The curly-haired lady said she thought the power must have come back on for a little while or else all the plants in the garage would have died. Some did die. And even more that were tucked under blankets on the porch didn’t make it. I could tell it hurt her heart to have to say goodbye to them, but she smiled when she saw I was okay, and within a few days, I was allowed back in the yard when it was warm and sunny once more.
She said she’s going to get me a bigger pot soon and that someday I’ll get to go back in the ground when there’s a spot ready for me.
Until then, I’m just going to keep letting her know I’m happy that she rescued me… and look at my newest leaf coming in! I’m pretty sure she’s going to love it!”