PRESENTS-PRESENCE

Patricia’s gardens…

The stress of trying to camp, then returning knowing that was the last time, wired my body up in such a way that it has taken a few days to calm down. The relief of being home is heavenly phenomenal.

To add to the stress, some people with age develop allergies from pollen due to shrinkage of the nasal passages. Thought my luck was with me, yet not so.

Such seemingly little things throw me off and need tending to.

“Samuel, I am a strong girl but have become so delicate!” I plaintively said while watching the evening news.

He looks at me and nods. Not much of a talker unless it’s about electrical workings or building something, then it’s my turn to zone out.

But still, to have a partner, a caring, devoted, loyal partner is everything to me. And a home with all the beauty ever conceived, knowing that the secret gardens occurred by my hands, all mine. Dug out shovelful by shovelful, then sifted together with peat moss, manure, and sand, because clay is not social to growing flowers.

And experimenting through the years before finding hardy plants that withstand the winters and a gardener who will not baby them. And then?

The magic of sitting among them, their beauty calming me even as they begin to wane with the coming of fall, giving up their seeds to store for next year’s planting of annuals in pots scattered about the patio. The perennials needing no care because they come up right in the earth every year all on their own.

No more buying expensive annuals when it’s so much fun nurturing flowers from seeds, like babies without stress. There are a few that display gorgeous color early and all summer; cosmos, zinnias, and marigolds with their bouncy bright yellows and oranges.

Aging is hard. Leaving one stage to another but still stuck in the past, moving on to the here and now was a mess. I made a mess of it. And it took a long time. Hanging on to Shane, making their marriage harder, making his whole life more difficult with my chaotic needs that no one can fill but me.

It is a life’s effort to let go. Even yesterday after they left from my grandson’s 13th birthday celebration, his entry into the teenage years, that empty nest pang struck a gentle jab.

But in letting go, wonders already present are noticed, inhaled, soaked up… bringing joy- funny bunny too young to know it has to run into the tall grasses to become invisible, not on the path right in front of me at every lap. The white spotted fawn looking up startled jumping away with its fluffy tail bobbing. And the golden crimson glow of the morning sun peeking through, each sunrise its own spectacle taking my breath away.

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