Today my flower garden was to get my sole attention. Before I could begin I had to pick up one of my granddaughters from daycare to give her a ride to a late-starting preschool class. Her little sister, Maggie, met me at the door. She knew I was taking Joci to school but she wanted me to stick around. She looked at me with the saddest eyes and asked, "Could we rock for a little bit?" My heart melted and I brought her along back home, promising to rock a bit if she would help me plant my flowers first.
She found a worm we named Wally. I thought naming it would allow her to get friendly enough with him to hold it. That didn't work. She set the plants in the holes I dug and dug a few holes of her own. We couldn't use any of her holes because she doesn't understand spacing, but she didn't notice. I was thinking of her as my little gardening-angel until she brought a flower for me to plant and I saw it was one we had planted a few minutes earlier.
We took a break from our work to play bouncy ball. The wind interfered and our big red ball went rolling around the cul de sac. Maggie, her two-year-old legs pumping for all they were worth, chased after it. The game moved inside the garage. There she spotted the jar of bubble stuff and immediately wanted to change games. It took me ten minutes to find where I stored the bubble wands last fall and by the time I found them she was coloring on the sidewalk with chalk. Blowing bubbles no longer interested her.
The art work she was creating kept Maggie occupied and I was left alone with my project. Then, as usual, I had more garden than I had plants. ČOur trip to the Flower Shop netted her a sucker from friend, Rosy, and a pretty red geranium that she plucked when I wasn't looking. The clerk wasn't upset. She said that plant needed to be dead-headed anyway. Back home my little helper was once again interested in helping me. Soon we had 2 dozen golden marigolds filling what had been a very blank spot.
She jumped up and down in greeting when she saw her Grandpa drive up. He had been gardening in his big vegetable garden at the farm. We went indoors to wash up and have lunch. After we had eaten Maggie said she didn't need a nap but neither of her grandparents could say the same thing. Grandpa went to the basement to claim his favorite daytime napping spot before he returned to his garden. She and I finally got around to rocking a little bit. A couple of stories later we crawled into Grandma's big bed and even though Maggie was sure she didn't need a nap, within minutes she was taking one.
We had most of the plants in before lunch so after naps I told her that our new flowers needed water to grow. Anything that has to do with water thrills this little girl and she manned the hose like a fledgling fire fighter. Her aim wasn't always the best and Grandma got watered several times. I know which direction I will grow if watering causes growth and I want no part of that. We put the hose away and came back into the house. The water outdoors did the opposite of making us cleaner so Maggie was looking forward to a long bubble bath. She was partially undressed when the phone rang and all plans were changed.
A loved one needed a ride to the hospital 40 miles away. "Can I wait in the van when you go to the doctor?" she pleaded. A very disappointed little girl put her clothes back on for the ride back to daycare, silent tears rolling down her cheeks. It was so much fun to see how happy she was when I brought her home with me, but her disappointment when the day had to end so unexpectedly was almost painful to see.
We will have other days to have fun together but little Maggie only knows how sad she is at the moment. My own pain at seeing this was tempered by the knowledge that the mood of a 2 year-old can flip every few minutes. Her daddy will be there to get her soon and she will run into his arms, her smile as bright as ever. firstname.lastname@example.org