|Cim took this picture. She's been having fun with my camera.|
Today Cim and I helped my mom pull weeds from some overgrown flowerbeds. My memories of weeding hark back to trudging out at 6:00 a.m. as a child to go hoe between the corn and scrabble with dirty fingernails at the pesky weeds around the green beans before it got too hot and muggy. It's funny how something you hate so much when you have to do it can be enjoyable when it's a breezy spring day and you can stop whenever you feel like it.
Today, as I tugged at clumps of tiny purple flowers, I remembered being about five years old, and being stunned to hear my dad call the Morning Glory flowers "weeds." They were beautiful, and suctioned so nicely to your nose when you inhaled deeply; I didn't understand how they could be weeds.
I had not yet learned that anything growing where it should not steals nutrients and space from things that matter more. The minuscule purple flowers I was pulling at today were weeds not because they weren't pretty, but because they didn't belong, and they were taking over.
My mind fixated on that as I heaped my pulled weeds into a pile beside the flower bed. What are the flowers in my life that are actually weeds? The things that are pretty, and good, but not the best?
It's dangerous for me to ask introspective questions, sometimes, because I just might find answers. Today, my answers were things like this:
- Reaching the end of the day with "exercise" marked on my goal chart but not "study my scriptures."
- Making time to study Italian but not to read a book to my daughters.
- Staying up researching housing options instead of going to bed early enough that I can get enough sleep.
Good, better, best--so often it's about perspective, the constant struggle to hold on to the perspective which will keep me on track with my long-term and eternal goals. Figuring out what are flowers and what are weeds. Having the determination to pull out the weeds even if they're pretty, because I can put something better in their place. And then following through and planting better flowers, or crops, in the space which has been freed.
Tonight I replaced my impulse to scroll through Facebook with writing this blog post. Picking weeds.