2013 was the year the weeds took over Thistlewood Farms.
They partied like they owned the place and planned fancy soirees and threw Weed-a-Pollooza and sold tickets in surrounding the counties….
….and invited all their friends.
Then their weed relatives all showed up and grew stronger and bolder and took over all the beds….
…..and told all the flowers to take a hike.
It was so embarrassing.
If you squinted or drove by the house quickly….
….you might have thought that it still looked like this.
The weeds grew up so high that they slightly resembled plants and bushes and there was the occasional flower here and there.
After all….weeds have flowers, too.
I think we all wanted to weed.
I think we knew that we were losing the flower bed battle.
But the summer of 2013 was a combination of baseball games and cheer leading and gymnastics and swimming and book club and fish fries and going to the beach and making lemonade and summer camp….
….and an un-weeded summer sped by like a blur.
I would look at the flower beds longingly and wish for the perfectly manicured gardens I’d seen in magazines and wish all my flowers would bloom again and wish there was more time and wish there was more help and wish I had taken weed-pulling classes in college.
And after a while…I just ignored it.
I acted like the weeds weren’t even there.
And summer turned into fall and fall turned into winter and the leaves fell and the snow came and covered all the flower beds.
And the weeds left for warmer climates…..
….and no one remembered about them any more.
Until this spring…..
….when they showed up and brought some friends.
And I thought those weeds were here to stay.
Mother’s Day 2014.
In the early morning light….with giggles and laughter and a cup of coffee….four sets of hands and voices guided me off the porch and around the corner.
They whispered….“Don’t look yet”
And “Turn here.”
And “Mom….are you sure you’re not looking?”
….”Okay….Mom….you can open your eyes.”
And I opened my eyes to this.
A beautiful, wonderful, incredible flower bed….
….without a weed in site.
They had pulled weeds and cleaned the bed and hauled leaves away in a wheel barrow and planted flowers from the local high school greenhouse and placed the stepping-stones in a fresh layer of mulch….
….and I never knew.
No one said a word to me.
I was gone for the afternoon and missed it all.
I couldn’t believe it.
My beautiful wonderful flower beds of peonies and day lilies and roses and hostas and magnolias and crepe myrtles….
….were smiling back at me.
The weeds were gone.
I laughed and danced in my pajamas and twirled around and hugged my four incredible, wonderful, amazing weed pullers….
…and cried into my coffee.
When you are a mother….there are so many times when life can seem so overwhelming.
You wonder if you are doing it right.
You wonder if it gets easier.
You wonder if there’s a handbook somewhere that no one told you about.
You wonder if telling someone to say please and thank you and correcting grammar and to chew with their mouth shut and to pick up their room and put their clothes away and to get their elbows off the table….
….even really matters.
And then one day you stand in the middle of the flowers and feel the morning sunlight on your face and the green grass under your feet and listen to the laughter dancing across the stepping-stones.
And you realize that all the moments of uncertainty and worry and trying….trying your very, very best….come together in that perfect moment….
….when you stopped to smell the roses.
PS Just in case you are wondering if life is all flowers and roses….
….this is a much more accurate representation of my life as a mother.
PPS I would love to hear about your Mother’s Day! Join me over on the forums and share your story.