It was one of those beautiful lazy sunny summer days. My neighbor and I were sitting cross-legged on a spread-out blanket, in my backyard. Oh, to be that young again! Iím a grandmother now, and if I were to get in that position today, getting up would be a miracle of God, for sure.
Our toddlers were skipping around us and happily sharing each others fun. Their language spoke volumes to them, but as for Judy and me, we could only guess what they spoke. I can imagine that our language was just as much of a mystery to them.
As Judy and I talked and laughed together, we kept an eye on the little ones. Mine, was a boy of two and a half, and hers a boy of three. The two of them, Billy and Tommy, scampered from tree to tree, bush to bush, and flower to flower. Their energy was endless. They were so innocent and pure, as they enjoyed Godís creations. Unlike Judy and me, they were not absorbed in the worries of motherhood and life.
Soon, my son became bored with the current activities and decided to start treasure hunting. Even at his young age, Billy knew of the pleasure of gift giving and set out to find the perfect gift for his mommy.
So, there I sat absorbed in my conversation with my neighbor friend, when suddenly Billy placed his first gift in my hand. It felt heavy and warm. I looked down and found a flat grey stone. I put forth my best ooh how beautiful rendition. Thank you! Thank you! And off he went all smile, and no face.
Judy and I continued with our conversation that had become quite serious. Judy was a teen wife and mother. Life was bearing down on her. I, the older mother, was filling her with all the wisdom I could muster up. It was just a show, as Judy had more wisdom in her little finger than my total.
I felt the presence of my son next to me. He had his little hand cupped and containing gift two for me. I, while still showing off my wisdom to Judy and not looking, extended my hand open to receive his gift. It felt warm and mushy! It brought me to attention. I peeked and found a ball of dog do! I screeched, YUCK! Billyís eyes started to tear up, and I knew that I had just blown it as a mother. I tried to do a retake but even being only two and half, Billy knew he had not pleased his mommy.
Off Billy went with determination upon his disappointed little face.
I turned to Judy and found her beautiful young face lighted up with the humor of it all.
No one told me how my face looked, but Iím sure it looked pained.
The afternoon was getting long and soon we were to end our time in the sun and take our naps. But before that was done, Billy came to me with gift three.
This time I gave Billy my full attention. This sweet little boy had brought me a bouquet of dandelions. He only had the yellow heads, the stems having been left behind to stand naked in the sun. He smiled with such pride and love that it melted my heart. I took him into my arms for a giant bear hug. He received the love that he had been seeking to feel. No other words were needed.
By using a drab looking stone, a ball of dog poop, and some dandelion heads; my son taught me true love. It is not what is given but the heart behind the gift, and how it is received, that counts. That long ago summer day Billy taught me to appreciate all of Godís creation, and not take it for granted. My toddler son taught me how to stay young at heart and take time to play. I like to call these lessons, dandelion love.
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