May fills me with great anticipation as I look about at blooming azaleas, flowering cherry trees, rhododendrons bursting with color.
In 2nd grade I was also filled with great anticipation. That particular May Day I walked home from school holding a construction paper, heart-shaped folder.
Walking through a vacant lot at the end of my street, I found the perfect flowers to go inside. Minutes later I surprised Mom with my hand-picked bouquet, both of us delighted by a simple art project filled with bright, beautiful, crayon-box yellow flowers. Dandelions, actually.
Yep, dandelions. Weeds.
My father would not have been delighted by dandelions. He would have shared Mom’s joy in my gift, but dandelions were not his idea of Pretty! Seeing yellow spots in his lawn, my father’s reaction would have been Weeds!
Dandelions: Mom’s delight and Dad’s frustration.
And isn’t that like life at times? Moments that start out pretty, but are actually rather weedy. Pretty moments that can go to seed if we’re not careful.
So often I think back and want to pull and toss those moments: the meeting that went terribly, the words left unsaid, the afternoon when I lost all sense of direction.
But you know what? It’s usually those weedy moments when I learn the biggest lessons. You know the ones in empathy, patience, insight and foresight, the list goes on…
Dandelions. I’m still going to pull and toss the ones that creep into my lawn, but first I’m going to marvel at their beautiful yellow color.