Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Flower Beds Anew

I don't know if anyone has ever told you this, but having a toddler is stressful. Having two toddlers? Just plain infuriating at times. My child brings out the worst in me. I don't know how she does it, but she does. And it makes me mad that she can push my buttons. She responds to Eli in ways that she doesn't respond to me. He tells her to stop something and she stops. If for some reason she doesn't, she gets a spanking and the behavior ceases. I tell her to stop something and she continues to do it, screaming, even after getting a spanking and being redirected. Agh! And the youngest is getting in some early practice for the terrible twos. Nice.

Add the stress of toddlers to the stress of my job. This is a particularly anxiety-inducing (but not to the point of medication) time in my work. State testing. Contract renewal and tenure (or non-renewal and job search). The long wait for an overdue spring break. Progress reports and grading to be done.

What do you get when you put all that together? One tired mama who is sick of being the wound-up monster that has taken over her personality. A mama who is afraid that this may not be temporary. A mama who needs to go outside.

And I've been doing just that whenever I can.

Last summer, I had the best time tending to the flower beds while children screamed themselves to sleep inside. I would spend a little time outside weeding and listening to the Dave Ramsey Show and when I came back inside, children were quiet and asleep. Once school started, however, I didn't spend any time outside. The last of my garden grew wild, and my flowerbeds were overgrown with grass and weeds. The last mow of the season by a teenager with no common sense ended with flower beds full of grass cuttings that had blown out the side of the lawnmower chute, deliver seeds of nastiness into my precious flowers. I was too overwhelmed to do anything about it.

The other morning, just when I was feeling like spring break should hurry up and get here, I was leaving for work and I saw a piece of purple trash in my flowerbed! I was about to be livid, but upon closer inspection, it was...gasp...a flower! My irises had started blooming! They didn't bloom at all last year, so I hadn't known what to expect. These things are huge.

If you remember, last year, my flower beds looked like the pictures on this post.

Now this is what the front bed looks like, with all those irises in bloom.

Doesn't it look so full? Next year I will probably have to thin it out and give flowers away. Anyway, escaping to the outdoors and spending time weeding my flower bed is very peaceful for me. Pulling weeks, admiring flowers, counting the flower shoots that are sprouting (the lilies are getting ready to bloom!).

I'm looking forward to summer time when I can get close to the Creator through His plant creations, and maybe through that I will learn how to cope with His small human creations.


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