I’m concerned that this business of sleeping in, sitting around and taking it easy could become habit forming. I have never taken things so easy in my life. I really, truly do feel like I’m in the recovery time for giving birth, but there is no baby to take care of, no older children to look after. Nothing that I HAVE to do. And while it is nice to be able to take things easy, it is also a bit disconcerting. I think I get this antsy feeling honestly. My parental families have this thing about “being a burden.” And even though my family has been so incredibly gracious, I do feel like a burden here.
I have been so blessed! Tasty, wonderful food, unexpected visitors, people filling in for me. It seems like every day has brought surprises that delight and encourage.
Before I ever left the hospital, my sisters brought me this basket of Calla Lilies,
Three different colors:
Exquisitely elegant, and one of the things I have never invested in for myself–
(but often wanted!)
I was so tickled, because I can plant them outside and they should come back every year.
My sisters know me better than probably anyone else outside my husband, kids and Mama.
When they visited me on Saturday afternoon, it did more for my recovery than anything else.
Sarah and Alma — You are the best!
On Monday, My cousin, Donna, stopped by with a window box
From the Ladies at our church.
She was worried that I would have maybe wanted cut flowers.
I would a thousand times rather have a window box over cut flowers!
This was so perfect!
I already found a place for them on my deck railing
outside the window that I can see from my chair.
It probably won’t stay there,
since Certain Man pointed out that it blocks the view of the bird feeder–
but it can go one side or the other, and I can still see it.
So incredibly cheery with the white and red and green.
Thank you, so much, dear friends! And the suppers brought by Ilva and Loretta, and the cookies from Emma —
Plus errands run and encouraging words, — Well, you gals are wonderful friends!
And then today, by UPS, no less, I got a delivery from a California plant company.
There were strict instructions for the box to be upright, and all was carefully packaged–
Again, such a special gift — a new houseplant.
(I do love me some houseplants!)
This one came as a gift from my sisters in law, Lena (from California)
and Rachel (from New York).
I set it there beside the family picture of Certain Man’s family —
Before the youngest sister, Ruth, was born,
Before his mother, Katie’s untimely death–
And then, in 1981, his brother, Joseph, went in a truck accident,
And in 2010, His father, Ralph, also left us for Heaven’s Shores.
The only three in that picture who are living today are
Lena, Rachel, and Daniel.
Today, I look at the beautiful flowers, look at those faces,
And I’m so grateful for all that God has given me in Daniel and his family.
There is one more flower that cheers me in these days of recovery.
Last Fall, I brought home a piece of a plant from my Sweet Mama’s house.
I stuck it into some water, treated the base of the piece with some root toning stuff–
And it took off.
I have never seen such gorgeous leaves, and it blooms almost constantly.
It reminds me of my Mama and her flowers
and how she would grow things on the kitchen windowsill.
I had a terrible time growing anything when I was first married.
Daniel’s grandmother, Florence Yutzy, would sometimes come into my house
And surreptitiously slip her finger into the tops of the containers of African Violets
And usually, she found them dry.
I would always be repentant and try to reassure her that I would try harder.
But she was so gracious to me, and she would say,
“Now, Mary Ann! Don’t you worry about that. Someday you will grow flowers.
Right now you are growing children, and that is more important!”
She didn’t live long enough to see that I have, indeed, grown flowers
In these years since my children are grown.
She would have especially loved this flower, and would have exclaimed over it.
(Probably wanted a “slip” to start one of her own.)
So, Mama, this flower is a reminder to me of you and your love for beauty
and your knack with growing things.
Houseplants will always be a part of the legacy you’ve left for me.
And Grandma Florence — Thanks for not giving up on a young, inexperienced
mama and for encouraging her to grow children while the time was right —
But also for giving me a hope for the “someday” that has somehow become NOW.
“Lord Jesus, I give grateful praise . . . “