Every morning and every evening, I stand in wonder of Preston’s garden.
As I shared in an earlier blog, my brother recently built Preston huge, waist high planters that are fit for a giant. Preston has always had a green thumb and we love fresh vegetables and herbs. After his illness, he tried for a couple of years to have a traditional garden. It would always quickly overwhelm him and he’d give up in defeat.
This year, I wanted to give Preston a reason to get out of the house. His pacing the floors constantly have left track marks in the carpet. I went to my brother with an idea, he took it and made my front porch a garden. Why my front porch and not my side porch that is bigger and unused? I was afraid that it would be neglected on the side porch. With Preston, his memory has one motto…. “Out of sight, out of mind”. By converting the front porch, Preston would see his garden several times a day when his I-watch alarms would remind him to walk his air suckers.
For the last month, I have watched his tiny little plants morph and grow their beautiful green leaves, and bright yellow blooms. They stand so tall and strong. Even with the beat down of the storms of late. These plants have flourished under Preston’s care. Just this morning, I saw the tiny little buds of cucumbers, squash, and tomatoes that will soon make it to the dinner table. The basil and thyme are gorgeous and ready to be floating in a pot of homemade spaghetti sauce. A sprig of my late grandmother’s spearmint plant has now reproduced and keeps my porch smelling lovely while keeping the critters away.
This morning, I was reminded of how those plants flourished. Someone invested in them. Treated them tenderly. Watered them and made sure their needs were met. Cages were placed to shelter some of the vulnerable plants. Weeds are plucked immediately. After a battering from a storm, a little extra attention is shown by picking a little dirt up around the root system.
Relationships need that same care. We need people to invest in us. Often times, it’s certain people. Maybe a parent, maybe our spouse, or a friend. At times, we need people to treat us tenderly and tend to the bruises this life can dish out. We need human interaction of someone feeding and watering our souls. Sometimes we need the love of others to “cage” and protect us from the storms. Or maybe we just need that someone to come by and help us up when the storms of life have knocked us down.
All I do know is that the plant has to have life to flourish. You can water, feed, shelter, and plant a dead stick. It will still be a dead, lifeless stick at the end of the season. It will not bear fruit.
If you’re investing in a fruitless relationship, and you’re the only one investing, feeding, or nurturing, it will remain dead. Surround yourself with people that will love and invest in you and have a huge desire to see you produce fruit….. all the while you’re reciprocating it and investing just as hard to see the fruits of your own labor.
Just my thoughts,