Friday, August 28, 2009

The Sunflower

For obvious reasons, I haven't been much into yardwork this year. In previous years, I would spend several hours a week weeding, mowing and doing general maintenance to keep the yard looking good. This year, I've barely managed minimal weed pulling. As a result, we've been somewhat overrun with weeds. I've kept up better in the front yard than the back, but it still isn't great.

This spring, right after I had E, I was out in the yard and I noticed a plant in my front flower bed. I had no idea what it was, but it didn't look like the weeds I usually pull. I knew I hadn't planted it, but for some reason I decided to leave it and see what it would become. Over the months, it got taller and taller, never revealing what it would be, but still I let it grow.

One morning, as I walked out my front door, I looked over to my flower bed and to my surprise found a beautiful Sunflower plant. I'm not sure what kept me from pulling it for all those months, but now I'm very glad I didn't. It's beautiful and happy and there's nothing better than a beautiful happy flower in your yard.

My unexpected Sunflower has been a source of contemplation for me this week. We've had some rough mornings getting children off to school. I've also been dealing with sleep deprivation as a result of a baby who is no longer sleeping well at night. I've been a tad frustrated with the 'weeds' of my life and I've spent too much energy trying to pull them and make my life perfect. It's been an exhausting week. But I realized yesterday that all my 'weeds' may not be weeds at all, but beautiful Sunflowers.

When O fed her dolly chips yesterday and then smushed them into the carpet, I was able to enjoy the moment and laugh at her creativity. When K surrounded E with every stuffed animal she could find, I was able to look at how beautiful my girls were instead of insist that she put things away to keep the house clean. I've been able to refocus my efforts on things that are more important in the long run, reminding myself once again that the children will not grow up and remember how clean the house was, but rather that they were loved.

I'm grateful for my unexpected Sunflower and the lesson it has taught me. I seem to need constant reminders that there are more important things than perfectly dressed children and a perfectly organized home. Laughter and love are by far the most important thing. Thank you, my beautiful Sunflower and my wonderful Father in Heaven for providing it.


Julia said...

Cute! I love the sunflower AND the analogy. Isn't it nice when our minds have that shift... life is just better!

bullfrogranch said...

Good job Stacey. Life is definitely full of unexpected twists and turns. It helps when we take time to enjoy the memorable moments as they come to us.

Dwight said...

Exactly. That's why I spend so much time taking pictures of flowers and posting them. And sunflowers are about the most cheerful. Except for . . .and . . . love gpa