An environment for development

Published 10:22 pm Friday, March 23, 2018

By QuaWanna Bannarbie

It is raining. Wait, it stopped. The sun is shining. No, it is snowing outside. Really? Snow in springtime. Yes. Snow. Rain. Freezing temperatures and icy streets in Suffolk on a March day.

Could someone please contact Old Man Winter and tell him that he is due to arrive somewhere else, because spring break is coming.


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Seasons are shifting. It is difficult to tell what time of year it is. Winter refuses to let spring have the stage. As a result, we have endured several temperature changes over the past two weeks. These climate changes have a noticeable impact on the life cycles of our developing plants and trees. This frequently changing environment is not conducive for optimal development.

Many Southern gardeners do not believe in planting any seeds before Good Friday. Critics of the practice call it folklore, because your crops are affected by the climate of the region more than whether or not you observe Good Friday rules. If the ground is wet and frigid, as it has been in Suffolk lately, it would be wise to wait even longer.

Scientists that study climate changes are climatologists. Climatologists have a meaningful profession (as do most scientists). They collect data about how the orderly systems of maturation and growth are affected by disturbances of climate and human influence. Just that bit of information about their work ought to make everyone pause for just a minute. Orderly maturation can be disturbed by its environment.

When I look for the lesson in these disturbing and adverse climate shifts, I consider how we grow in the environments where we live. Are our surroundings supportive of our optimal development? Consider the community as the soil that provides the nutrients the families in Suffolk need to produce healthy fruit. We speak of new developments. Are these developments producing good fruit? There is something in this climate change to teach us about development.

Could it be that the life cycles around us are saying something about our influence on our climate? Could it be that we are seeing adverse conditions because our human influence is disturbing the potential of our legacy (our children)? We count heads as evidence of growth, but what are we placing inside the heads?

May Suffolk be a city impressed not by how much we increase in number but by how well we number the days, such that we teach life lessons for the generations to develop and produce a mature community, and not just a large one. May our environment be ripe for productive citizens.

QuaWanna Bannarbie is an adjunct professor of Nonprofit Leadership and Management with Indiana Wesleyan University, National and Global. Her children attend Suffolk Public Schools. Connect with her via Twitter @QNikki_Notes.