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  • Writer's pictureYamit Armbrister

Being a Human Cactus

I have spent 10 years gazing at cactuses and taking photos of this rare plant. My fascination of it grew while living amongst it in gorgeous Arizona.

I’ve realized that I admire this thorny plant for its unique characteristics and mostly for its resilience.

I spent hours thinking that the resilience of the cactus can serve as a metaphor for human resilience. Humans can also adapt to difficult circumstances and overcome obstacles by finding original ways to conserve resources when needed, bring forth strength for survival, persevere in the face of challenges and even thrive in harsh conditions.

Not many would choose to put themselves in harsh conditions to test their survival abilities. But will we adapt to it if we have no choice?

Like the cactus, which is the symbol of resilience and strength, humans can also preserve when faced with harsh conditions, overcome challenges and highly difficult situations.

As I watch it survive in my third-floor balcony with little water or care, I mostly admire:

1. Its thorns which indicate distance, modesty, and abstinence from touch. It doesn’t need much attention or care to survive. No spotlight or shiny colors to survive where most beauties won’t.

2. Its ability to keep growing in arid and desolate areas, sometimes alone and by that empowers the desert and its vastness.

3. Its ability to keep growing regardless of external conditions.

4. Above all, the blooming of its flowers is a message that it is possible to break out of ‘nothing’, an ability to rise above all obstacles and still bloom.

I took this photo in 2017, AZ desert.

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