Monday, September 1, 2008

the gardens and Momma

Sunday I spent hours working in the garden. I trimmed back the dead perennials and cleaned the many pine needles that fall from the tall, tall white pines above my house. One of the things I have been wanting to get to all summer is to dig up the edging bricks and reset them. The dirt and plants seem to take over and they disappear over time. Now the garden looks all clean and tidy and ready for some fresh beautiful colored fall mums to be tucked in the empty spots. A kind of new beginning.



Each spring I plant these two rusted red wagons, one smaller size stacked inside a bigger one, with Impatiens. Impatiens always look nice and full at this time of year.

I enjoy working in the garden whenever the mosquitoes will leave me alone long enough to accomplish something. The reason I worked in the garden Sunday is that I always work in the garden on August 31st. Or at least for the last 13 years.

13 years ago, when she was dying and couldn't go to the garden, I promised my Mom that I would bring the garden to her to enjoy. I did- by bringing in fresh flowers from the garden each day. I took care of her in our home even after she was bedridden and I was 5 months pregnant and had a 3 yr old (E.) to care for too.


We had many frank discussions about death and what I would do without her. How would I go on without her? I told her that I would not mourn by hanging out at her grave. { Ironically, part of E's mourning process was to have me drive her to the grave 3 or 4 times every week for about 2 years!! The child mourning "experts" told me to do it if that was what she asked for, since Grammy had been a daily part of E's life for her first 3 years; the years that some say are the most developmentally important. She would clean and fuss around the grave marker like a 90 year old widow.}


I told my Mom I would feel her with me every day and everywhere...especially in her gardens. (I inherited her house) I promised to "be with her" every August 31st by working in the dirt of a garden. There I can think and solve things weighing heavy on my mind. And find joy in nature and God and the hope of things renewing even after death.



Pictured above are my Mom and Dad. Pictured below are my aunt and my Mom. These were taken in 1950 at my Dad's brother's wedding. My Mom was 23. I love these images of her. Check out her hat as she stands at the punch bowl!!



I most often addressed my Mom as, "Momma".
Pretty weird but... the only one of my three that calls me "Momma", is my E.
For some more weirdness:
I dreamed a dream filled with strange events that had symbolism that made perfect sense just before waking on Friday. My Mom was part of it. I got up and immediately started writing it. N. watched me as the cursive written dream story came off my hand and on to the paper as fast as I could scribble. I had the girls read it. A's response was quick and dry and typical A. wit and wisdom:
"Ok Mom, you keep writing that Mothman stuff." *pause* 
Also weird is what happened last year {read about it here}
The best and very weirdest thing was (this!!)

1 comment:

She'sSewPretty said...

What a wonderful tribute to your momma! I don't know if I read the story of the canary when you wrote it originally. I think that is is amazing!