But a few weeks before she left this universe we had a conversation. We talked about her plants. She loved plants. Flowers, trees, vines, herbs, just about anything would grow under the careful tending of her hands. She always had that intuition of what each plant needed at a certain time. Oh, she studied as well. She had many books on the different varieties of plants that she grew or wanted to grow in the future. What information not found there would lead to a trip to the nursery to discuss soil or proper feeding techniques. Although privy to many of these discussions I always had the impression she just instinctively knew. As far back as I can remember our back yard looked like a plant nursery. Back in the 1970's when macrame hanging pots were popular we had many. Ours were filled with huge ivy and various other plants plentiful with leaves and flowers.
I never had the gift of helping things grow. I never got the formula correct. It was always too much or too little of this or that. I ended up with pitiful dried up pieces of dirt. Many times she would come and help me get my yard presentable. We would dig and get the flowers just right. I had limited success. But I learned a bit along the way.
So she had some amaryllis bulbs and had previously had limited success with them. She had decided to get two huge bags of Miracle Grow potting soil and just put the bulbs in there and see what happened. It was an experiment of sorts. That was part of our conversation.
A few weeks later she was gone.
While at her house picking up some things, one of them being plants, her husband took me beside the garage and showed me two huge bags of potting soil and asked if I wanted them. I told him I knew exactly what there were, and yes, I did.
I took the bags and planted them in two pots.
The next Spring, 2004, I waited. Would anything happen? Would they bloom? Finally, the first bit of green appeared above the dirt. A sign. There was life. The experiment had worked. Those bulbs were going to make it. And they did bloom. One red, the other pink.
And they have bloomed every Spring since then. They have multiplied. I have divided bulbs and put them in different pots and given some away.
10 years of blooms.
I can't help it. I get excited to see the first signs of green popping through the dirt every year. Then when the bud starts it is amazing. When the flower blooms it is wonderous. To others it may just be a flower in a pot. Not to me.
Sometimes the simple things in life can take on a whole different meaning. The bloom of a flower can be like a sister tapping you on the shoulder and saying,
"Sister, I'm still here, look at me!"
We only have to be observant of our surroundings to find the blessings laid in our paths each day.
The flutter of a butterfly. The song of a beautiful red cardinal. The soulful eyes of a wondering dog that crosses our path. A rock shining more brilliantly than all the others. That one brighter star in the sky at night.
Lessons. Gifts. Messages.
We are only left alone if we chose to ignore our blessings.
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