Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bigger Picture Moment: The Garden

I'm on the fence about planting a garden this year.  Well, not the planting part -- that's what I love. The dark, damp earth, tilled into tenderness; seeds poked and sprinkled; nametags planted at heads of (mismatched) rows.  I love the anticipation of gardening, and the excitement over those first, timid shoots rising above the dirt. 

And it sounds to me like I just described -- in plant metaphor -- why I'm thrilled and a little nervous to be pregnant.  The expectation and growth; first, fluttery movements tickling me from within; months of planning and dreaming; love at first sight and nurturing first days.  But because I've done this before, I know what it's all about, both joys and stresses.  I know strain and exhaustion will be added when we bring home another child, and I know how I'll be filled with doubt over my ability to do this right

I'll be picking at undesirable weeds and watching for gnawing insects.  I'll be hunched over in the heat of the summer, working, while the world seems to be playing.  Yes, I'll admire the beauty of what we've grown, and I'll love it through hailstorms or drought, hoping to bring forth fruit despite my inadequate gardening skills.  But will it be enough?

It will, because it has to be. 

As for my back yard, part of me is ready to swap my vegetable garden plan with all its pressure and worry, and plant a tangle of flowers instead.  Something that will be lovely and imperfect and under no insistence to produce anything other than a bit of color and life.  Perhaps a honeybee garden: weedy at first glance, but abundant with sweets and the hum of promise; perennials, so I don't have to fret over a new plan each spring. 

And -- again -- it sounds to me like I just described why this baby, no matter how uncertain I've felt about jumping into the babyhood fatigue once again, will be perfect for our family.  Because we knew that our family wasn't complete yet, and this time...this time...

maybe we'll simply let the baby be a beautiful, buzzing, tangle of life.  Maybe we'll let it grow without stressing about what fruit it bears or how easily it sleeps through the night.  Maybe we won't succumb to anxiety and doubt this time around.

Maybe we'll simply appreciate the gift of the flower, and savor its unquestionable placement in our garden.

We're seeing the Bigger Picture through simple moments -- moments that force us to stop and take notice of the ways our worlds are important, meaningful, and beautiful. Please join us at Melissa's place today! Take a minute to focus on what's real in your life -- what's important -- and record it. Share it, visit the other participants, and let us be a part of your Bigger Picture!


  1. Oh, Sarah, those last three paragraphs sum up why I love your blog (and you, my friend!)

    I had a moment of major self-doubt when we arrived home with Quinn those handful of weeks ago. We'd literally been home for an hour maybe and the house was a mess already and hey, look, there's a tiny bundle here that I must not break and she needs to eat a whole lot. ... And now, a month out from that moment, we have eased just a bit more into this new life. It's still a mess much of the time but we're figuring it out and the map is being drawn. Sometimes we have to erase and rework the path, but still -- it's being drawn :)

  2. Love this today. It is something I have struggled with often. You have a Beautiful way of expressing it!

  3. Oh, what a beautiful post! My friends have assured me that the third baby is so much easier than to first two...

  4. Gorgeous. Just so lovely. Enjoy your tangle - may I suggest a wildflower field?

  5. "...let the baby be a beautiful, buzzing, tangle of life."

    That's beautiful, Sarah. Really lovely.

  6. I feel like you wrote this just for my heart. {Not as in only for me, but as in really suited for me}.
    Beautiful, Sarah, wonderfully beautiful. Holding this tight today and as we embark on the journey of {gasp} adding number three.

  7. I really love this, so beautifully put.

    My husband and I have been reflecting on this thought a lot lately. We too were so far out of babyhood when we brought G home. It's actually been so peaceful. We honestly worry so much less, there is so much less stress on all the little things. IS she eating enough, ,making enough diapers, is she hitting this that and the other milestone. We are simply just enjoying being her parents.

    It's a far cry from our first for sure. I wish we could someone teach this to new moms, although I guess that's the process of becoming a mom right?

    PS. Last summer when I was pregnant, I totally ignored our garden :-)

  8. I could take a peaceful snooze in your"honeybee garden: weedy at first glance, but abundant with sweets and the hum of promise; perennials, so I don't have to fret over a new plan each spring." It sounds like the perfect place to rest. And since you know what is to come just rest your mind and your heart and let God do all the work.

    This post was so very peaceful. Loved it!

  9. Thank you for sharing your perspective here with such lovely words. Such great hope! It WILL be beautiful--your garden and life with five.


Hmm...And how did that make you FEEL?