|Anticipation For This Year|
Today the weather is bright and shiny with a gentle breeze flowing past the flowerbed that I am sitting in. I look up from the flowers that surround me, and I can see my children playing next door with their cousins who are 3 and 2. I watch my son Will, gently playing with his 2 year old cousin. Will is watching for his cousin’s next move in anticipation in how to play along with him. As I look over to Abby, my daughter, I can see that she is pulling her 3-year-old cousin in his wagon. They are having a wonderful time together, and I can see Abby being a “big girl” as she giggles at her cousin who is laughing heartily along with her.
|Abby, "I picked these for you Mama!"|
I now find myself looking over at our flower garden again, and I notice that the second batch of flowers are finally pushing their way through the Minnesota soil. My memories go back to the time when Will and Abby helped me plant these colorful gladiolas. Will set the bulbs out within the spacing that I had laid out for him, while Abby was preparing the soil for my unorthodox method of planting. I was using a 2-inch PVC pipe, about a foot long to form the bulb hole, and I used a 5-pound hammer to push the pipe into the ground at a depth I marked on the pipe. Will would then take each dirt plug out of the pipe as Abby dropped the bulbs into the soil behind us. We had a good method going although it probably would not be endorsed by any gardening magazine that wished to increase its sales (ever).
|Will in the bright sun, but very proud.|
The planting went well, until I turned at one point to look at Abby. Unfortunately for me, the hammer at that moment was making contact with the pipe, (or so I thought). My finger decided to intervene at that moment, and I felt an intense pain culminating at the end of my left hand. At that instant, I let out an intense muffled scream, while at the same time in opening my eyes; I could see my children looking at me in horror. I managed to say, “Not to worry kids, I’ll be all right!” with gritted teeth.
|A child sees its beauty, even when we do not.|
For a time, I lost my joy in our planting adventure. I kept looking at my hurting hand, and so as with all things that progress, a few days later, I lost my fingernail. As in most things, a lesson was to be learned for all of us, especially for me.
Today I look at the fruits of our labor and I smile over the shared adventure of planting these flowers. I see how it has brought so much joy to so many people when looking at our little flower patch. Now, I contemplate less over the pain from my mistake, and more in the pride I see on my children’s faces as they present the flowers to family and friends. I think of how, as with so many things in life, there is a certain amount of pain that we go through, just because we are human, and we make mistakes. In the end I have come to realize, that each of us must make the choice of looking either at the flowers, or the fingernail.
James 1: 1-12