Scenes From A Community Garden

Every Saturday morning, my youngest child and I go to a community garden and water every bed that is there. Then we take pitchforks and turn the compost piles while adding water to them. This is part of his service hours for his Scouting career.

I like to think that the time he and I spend in that garden is more quality time for us than community service. We wander through before watering begins to check each of the beds, we watch the birds dart around the tomatoes gathering worms, and we also check the different vegetables to see which ones are budding and which ones are growing and which ones we could pick one or two of. Then we work in tandem, he'll take one side of the garden and I take the other, each of us watering until we meet in the middle. As we go along, I often shout riddles to him to wake his mind up. He often retorts with jokes that he often gets from the wrappers off of bubble gum.

Oh sure it's tedious work at times, and it's not very nice when people drive by, honk their horns and then wave a fresh cup of coffee in my direction. But what I get is that time with him that I know years from now, he'll cherish in his heart.

Those are the times that I replay in my head while I undergo thousands of tests for cancer, or during treatments. Just to keep my head from the fact that a HUGE needle is being jabbed into my rump and the stuff that enters first is ICE COLD and then it BURNS like I've just done a shot of Rumplemintz. But the mental image of my youngest watching butterflies dance among the crooked neck squash is what keeps me going. Seeing the wonder in his eyes of watching the progress of honeydew melons from week to week is heart warming and happy.

Sometimes as he and I water, we start singing music that we know Hubby doesn't like. Tech 9 is one of our favorites. We also sing Eminem, Pink, and even some Lady Gaga. I guess you could say those times are our time to get downright silly with each other and just enjoy the ability to be goofy and not have to worry about others looking at us like we've lost our minds. We can enjoy without fear or worry about being together and cutting up and doing what we enjoy. Plus it's a great way to be able to do something without having to worry about what the balance is on my bank account and I think he gets more out of it than what he would get if I took him to the mall or to a store and spent money on stuff that would enable separation time from each other. And then when we are done watering, and we roll the hoses back up, we sit a minute on a bench under a pecan tree and just sit there, enjoying the sounds of the birds singing, the distance rumble of the trains, the sunlight bouncing off of drops of water on the leaves of a pepper plant. But most of all, it's our time to be able to enjoy each other without the daily worries of grades, illness and meal planning.

Published on 10/29/2011 in