Tuesday, January 24, 2012

What a Difference a Year Makes

 During a visit to the community garden last week (before the snow), as I was pushing A's stroller around a massive mud puddle at the corner of the garden clearing, I had one of those moments when the memory of an unremarkable event comes rushing back to me.  The garden is technically closed for the season, which means I carry all of my tools and materials from a distant - locked - gate all the way around the clearing and into the garden.  Precariously balancing a large cardboard box under my arm and swinging a shovel and hoe in the opposite hand while trying not to let the stroller shake too much, (lest the pile of gloves and hand tools placed precariously on the cup holder tip and fall off), I heard R's scared voice call after me and abruptly realized he had stopped following.  Just like that, I was taken back to a day during last year's rainy spring when I'd decided not to chance taking the car through this same mud puddle.  As I walked around the puddle, struggling to carry too many items, I suddenly discovered that two-year-old R was scared of mud and would NOT walk blithely around it.  Only, on that day I wasn't pushing a stroller, just working around an awkward big belly.  And R was so, so scared that I ended up setting down everything and carrying him and the equipment, leap-frog style, the rest of the way to the gate. 


But he's a big boy now.  "You came almost all the way around it by yourself!" I said proudly, as I set the tools and the cardboard against the fence and carried R the last two feet around the puddle.  I set him down in the grass and we walked the rest of the way to the gate, which he helped me open.  He doesn't drop his snacks anymore, or fall in the puddles, and if I help him he'll lay in the grass on the path with me and watch airplanes go by.  He used to watch my every move in the garden, grabbing me when I moved around too fast for him to follow; last week he spent the better part of our garden time in an intense game of pretend where he lived in a house with an elevator.  Later he asked me to tell him stories about Ropps and Gopps, fictional characters he made up one day out of thin air.  I suppose by this time next year A will be chasing after his brother and tripping into the mud puddle.

That's one of my favorite things about a garden: it doesn't let you fail to notice the time passing by.


  1. What a nice story. One of the benefits of a blog is that you capture these memories, and someday R and A can read these stories and remember their mother's love and pride in their accomplishments when they were little.

  2. You're right. I realized after I wrote this that the blog is sort of a cross between a journal and a scrapbook. Almost like a research notebook!