Don’t Work So Hard

“Lass, whit haes a bawherr dandelion ever dane tae ye? Throw some leaves in a bucket ‘n’ hae yersel’ some supper.”

If you have read any of my other blogs you know that the garden inspires me to write, and lately, so does the T.V. show “Outlander”. It’s not a perfect garden and requires a lot of sweat and grind, but it’s our garden, my family’s, and mine. 

At first glance, I noticed all the things I let go, like weeds, the property issue behind our land, and the wasp nests from last year. Things need repairs, like the deck which has thorns of its own, or the screened porch that allows varmints and insects to picnic with us. It reminded me of how permanence was not something you can easily afford with money or time.

The first thing I did was get out my phone and video some new issues with the property management behind us. Yes, I took my day off after a hard month’s work to work some more. I say this defensively, as my angels have been repeating this message over and over, “You don’t have to work so hard.”

Toxic waste from a doctor’s office, garbage, and poor maintenance of the berm was left behind our property to pile up, as there was no one in charge to make things right. What I mean by no one in charge, is me. I didn’t take charge of my own property. I knew firsthand how hard it is to get the township and the village to listen. My last venture took 4 months, but I did it. I got them to fix a flooding issue. However, it wore me out and so I am not looking forward to the next battle.

I find myself working very hard to keep my family afloat in this ever-inflationary world we live in, and there isn’t even a flood this time. It would be nice just to relax and admire the view, but I could not find it in myself to do this.

I walked down the path behind the houses that go on for a block straight. It was interesting to look behind people’s properties and see how their fences all needed mending. I saw broken boards, fences propped-up, and contraptions to keep the weeds from emerging into their yard. The berm behind us was loaded with dandelions, and no backyard can withstand a strong crop, yielding seeds, on the top of a hill. It only takes 3 seeds from 7 dandelions to fill up a backyard.

During this time we readily call Covid, I saw some outrage and arguments. It really tested people’s true nature and hidden frustrations. We were faced to look at the inside and outside of our homes without escape. One thing I think we all can agree about is how the way we did business in this monetary world, was not able to withstand the storm that hit. A lot of fences blew down.

I started to ponder the meaning behind the word “mending fences”. Did I have any fences to mend? Most people think about how relationships are more about other people, but the Vedic inside of me realizes that it’s about the self. What fences do I have to mend in myself? How do I see things from the back side of my own fence before I look at others?

After I walked the path behind the houses, I went into my own space and started to deal with the dandelions. At first, I wanted to did deep and get to the roots, but a message came in, “The roots are not as strong as you think.” It’s then that my husband came out and said, “Take it easy. I’ll spray them.” But, this didn’t stop me from keeping the dandelions from spreading their seed.

“Nip them in the bud. We’ll spray later” I said. 

I didn’t know where I was going with this blog at this point, but my angels said, “You’ll see.”

As I started to look closely at each dandelion cropping, I noticed a world I never imagined. In early spring the honey bees sit on the tops to rest, and cicadas hide under their leaves until they molt. When the warm weather comes, the flowers bloom, and bloom, and bloom. What I didn’t realize is how tiny buds near the bottom of the root feeds on the succulent stems of the blooms above. This is how they keep propagating. It’s a tight-knit group that works together to form a strong continuous unit or family. Dandelions are wind-resistant and heat-resistant. Their little family unit survives the weather. 

“Aha!” I thought. “I get it.”

As with many families, Covid hasn’t been easy. My family had to deal with school issues, how to pay for college, how to pay our bills, how to get business, how to stay safe, how to not worry, and how to live. It was/is messy. However, here we are. We recognized the issues, saw the opportunity, and mended our own fences. Because of our actions, I have new clients, my eldest son has a scholarship to college, and we are doing things we never thought possible.

We are like a dandelion!

Maybe I’ve been too hard on them?— the dandelions, that is. Maybe they are here to show us that we share something in common. 

As the Scotts would say, “Lass, whit haes a bawherr dandelion ever dane tae ye? Throw some leaves in a bucket ‘n’ hae yersel’ some supper.” 

In other words, “Don’t work so hard.” Sometimes easy solutions are right in front of you, and your family unit just needs some attention so you can put supper on the table.

Lesley Wexler,