“M..u..m. The ball’s gone over to Gerald’s”
The long drawl on “mum” reverberates in my ears even after more than twenty years and images of my bare, brown patch of a garden springs to mind. What a difference to the lush lawn in front of me today.
As the boys were growing up, our tiny garden was their football field, their tennis court, their mini gym. My borders were mainly sturdy shrubs that could withstand all kinds of abuse from all manner of balls, rackets and shoes. Our world centred around the boys and our conversations revolved around them….which activities to choose for them, what kind of discipline, where to go at weekends….And all the while as they were growing and outgrowing the small garden, I kept hankering after my dream garden.
And there it is now, in front of my eyes, very much a part of my home, seen in all its glory through the bi-fold doors with no net curtains to hide it. A well-manicured lawn surrounded by a border of low bushes in every shade of green, resplendent with my favourite plants: dangling hot pink fuschias, pearly strings of bleeding hearts, golden yellow osteospermums, and pastel roses galore. In one corner a dark acer stands sheltering two lovers and in another my favourite pitcher fountain rippling with water.
And today one of our main topics of conversation is the garden: when do we prune the hellebores, why is the jasmine not growing, what feed to buy…. If only I knew then that there is a right time for everything, I would have perhaps enjoyed my kids’ outdoor play more and fretted less about not having a garden brimming over with blooms.
But no regrets. Plus I am letting go of the guilt. Both do not really serve me. I have inculcated mindfulness now. Must be the right time for me I guess and better late than never. I have learnt to stop and savour the ordinary beautiful moments that we so often miss when we are operating on autopilot. So as I sit by my expansive doors now and marvel at my outdoor space having merged with my indoors, I realise I have come full circle. I can revel in the moment and also look forward to my one-year old grandson come and mess around with me in my haven. And this time round I intend to enjoy his mucking around.
3 thoughts on “Then …and Now”
Emotions like these are very natural. It is very easy to reflect on the past with today’s hindsight. I believe we should not regret our past, as it has made us the person we are today.
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Really enjoyed going through your blog — very sensitive and sensible- we all experience these feelings and it’s wonderful to share them
Thanks Shehla. Good to have you on board. Please share your views sometimes.