My window boxes seem sick.
They’re not overflowing with blooms like they once were. I’ve spent some time the last few days trying to keep them pruned and watered and happy. To say that I sport a beautiful emerald green thumb would be laughable. My oldest has two. Go figure.
My friends know my failings in the gardening world, and they don’t care. My thoughts and my heart keep circling back to that old gang, now sprinkled all over the globe, in every climate I can think of, working on their own gardens. We shared a block for a year or two, and tears, and laughs, and fire pits, and wine. One of them e-mailed today with a tale of a horrible accident in her husband’s squadron, asking for us to pray for all involved. Amazing! The immediacy of the internet! A miracle!
Another’s husband is deployed and she goes it alone for the year. Another’s husband just took a remote assignment and now her oldest leaves for college. Another unpacks boxes in the Orient. Another adjusts to a new German life just an hour down the road from me. This friendship garden that I speak of sprang up by accident. I don’t remember anyone really cultivating it, except maybe on Friday afternoons and our tools were usually lawn chairs. We all threw our own seeds into the mix, just to see what would emerge. It was the most incredible garden! They blessed me and gave, gave themselves, and even now when words (mostly written in e-mails) are the glue between us, they are still blessing me. I wish I could talk through my uncertainties today with them. Where will I be this time next year? What to do about this child or that one? Where do I find this agency on base or that office? The list goes on.
Today, all are learning to tend their own new gardens of blooms. Adapting and changing to a new environment every few years can be exhausting for that military gardener. Mostly, I tend to forego the nursery or the ‘live growing things’ area at the local Wal-mart altogether You see, if I don’t buy them, then I don’t have to find a home for them when the time comes to leave. I can’t take them with me. In much the same way, I tend to avoid the deep, meaningful, emotion-wrenching relationships. The kind that need cultivating. And time. Too draining. Must ALSO leave them behind. So the fact that I invested in window boxes and plants to enjoy here …….is a huge leap of faith for me. And the fact that an amazing garden sprang up on an ugly street from unknown seeds souls a few years back…….Another miracle……
And so, I tend my gardens, both of them. Even as summer winds down here, with chilly nights and frosty mornings, the garden of these friendships, in my soul, is planted DEEP.
It is ever blooming.