December 9, 2013
Held out to me, 3 dandelions, slightly wilted, stems jiggered. In a hand which still has it's toddler chubbiness.
"It's for you, Erin.", said with a grin and a face full of joy, knowing I'll accept this offering and give it the right reaction.
I do. I Ooo and Ahh, and lift them up to have a smell, and say thank you before filling a jar with water to place them in.
Those 3 dandelions will wilt even more over the next couple of hours. I don't think there is anything you can do to make dandelions stay alive once they have been picked.
These flowers, that in my everyday life I look down on, dismiss as weeds, have the same pride of place on my desk as other flowers, hibiscus and roses and hydrangeas. Because here they are all given with the same childish indiscriminating love of beauty, unselfish gifting. And I welcome them, even when they are given every day. A few hours every day I reclaim my child-like eyes and appreciate the beauty in ordinary things.
I love those 3 flowers, but as I clean up at the end of the day I toss the curled up and withered stems into the bin. I'm comforted as I throw them away that tomorrow they will be replaced by a new set, from another child. These ugly weeds find their way onto my desk most days. And I remind myself to look each day at the world with child-like eyes and appreciate the beauty that others would just as easily throw away.