My patience was waning fast as I stepped outside for a moment of peace after a morning of demands, whining, and disarray.
I breathed deep, then began to wander around the yard. I peeked at my vegetable garden, peered into the inflatable pool, checked the mailbox that I knew would still be empty at this time of day.
I turned to go back inside, holding my breath for the chaos that awaited me; the cereal on the floor that I hadn’t cleaned up yet, the six loads of laundry needing my attention, the sink full of breakfast (okay, let’s be honest, last night’s dinner dishes, too.) I could already hear the boys voices as they debated heatedly. Something flickered in the corner of my eye; a cardinal? my favorite bird! I turned my head to get a better look, and saw a tiny pair of red boxer briefs disappear down the hill. Fantanstic. Sighing, I followed, calling “Rogue! I’m going back inside now. Come on!”
His blonde head popped up above a patch of weeds and he yelled back, “I’m just looking at my flowers!”
Ah, yes; Rogue’s “flowers.” Our yard full of stubborn dandelions = his garden full of flowers, of which he is very proud.
“Yes, they’re beautiful. Now let’s go.”
I grabbed his wrist, and he swiped at the dandelions as we left, snagging three and pouting “me no done yet.”
“I am, and you weren’t supposed to be out here anyway.” I thought grumpily.
When I stepped into the kitchen, I found my four year old, Mazzen, perched on top of the sink, with three of my collected glass bottles in hand, holding them under the running faucet.
“What are you DOING?!” I gasped.
Rogue stepped around me and offered Mazzen the weeds.
“I got them!” He hollered excitedly. “I got them a’prise for Mama!”
Mazzen glanced at my irritated face, but accepted the stems and placed one delicately into each bottle.
“We wanted to make it pretty so you can feel happier,” she said, her eyes searching my face with uncertainty.
I felt shame crawl up my face, heating my neck and cheeks. I went forward and embraced Mazzen, carrying her off the counter, then knelt down to gather Rogue into the hug.
“Thank you.” I whispered. “It is beautiful, and I do feel happier. And I’m sorry that I’ve been so impatient this morning.”
Rogue kissed my cheek as Mazzen hugged my neck. They hopped up, running off to play.
I turn back to turn off the water and gaze at the bottles in the windowsill. I suddenly see them the way I couldn’t while impatience clouded my vision. Beautiful, happy flowers.
“Patience and wisdom walk hand in hand, like two one-armed lovers.”
–Jarod Kintz, $3.33