Blog Post

The Indomitable Spirit of Jonquils

A few things lined up in my life recently, and together they gave me a reminder I’ve needed. 

I noticed how even though the jonquils, which line nearly all of the roadways where I live, die when we have a cold snap, they spring back to life as soon as the weather warms up again. They’re always the first flowers to bloom around here, and their sunny blooms are a sweet reminder that spring is coming, however long winter has felt.

Photo by Kristina Paukshtite on

I was speaking with someone on the phone later the same day, and they were providing a professional reference for someone I’m helping hire at our company. The lady mentioned the candidate’s “indomitable spirit” and refusal to give up. She talked about how he was always learning, always growing as a person, even when things didn’t work out.

These things in conjunction were a useful reminder to me. 

My first post-college job isn’t going quite as well as I had hoped, and after having waited so long to start my first career job (thanks COVID-19), I had begun questioning whether my chosen career is really the one for me. I’m sure my last post communicated some of the frustration I’ve felt recently. This doubt brought a spiral, of course. If this isn’t what I’m supposed to be doing, then what were the last four years (and student debt) even for?

Then, this harmony of events reminded me of the idea of an “indomitable spirit,” something that was frequently mentioned in the taekwondo classes I took in my teens. It is an idea that was reinforced over and over, but I had somehow forgotten about in the years since those classes.

Photo by David Jakab on

So what is an indomitable spirit?

I think someone with an indomitable spirit refuses to give up. Refuses to be conquered.

Not someone who always wins, but someone who tries again after they lose. Someone who gets back up and tries again every time they lose. Maybe not the same way, because I also believe in innovation and adaptation, but tries again nevertheless.

I was reminded by some little yellow flowers to never give up, to keep pushing and fighting. Even when there is a “cold snap” in life, or a period of things not going quite right, keep going. Spring will come and winter will not last forever. 

I bought a bouquet of flowers today when I went grocery shopping, just to help remind me to keep trying, and also because I love fresh flowers. To me, having fresh flowers is a sign that someone is doing well enough to spend money on something that isn’t really a “necessity,” so it is a very personal reminder to keep pushing and working for my goals. A little pink bouquet can say a lot, it turns out. 

I find it useful to have physical reminders sometimes, and I hope over the next weeks these flowers will remind me to keep trying. I have goals for my life, and I will take steps to reach them. Sometimes goals have to change, but as long as I am moving (hopefully forward), I will be happy.

Can you see the little pink stripe on this one bloom? I thought it was just so precious!

What is something that reminds you to keep going when you get discouraged?