I pulled weeds tonight: got down on my knees and dug in for some dirty work. Wait, let me restate that: I wore big plastic gloves while pulling weeds just in case a spider decided to sprint near me.
As I bent over engaged in a wrestling match with the unwanted greenery I had a flash back to the last time I pulled weeds from my mother’s yard. My sister and I decided we would do a good deed — we would rid her flower garden of the big “weeds” sticking out all over the dirt. After we unknowingly pulled up all her newly planted flowers we were promptly given the scolding of a lifetime.
I have avoided weeding ever since.
But tonight I decided it was time to dig in.
I armed myself with said spider-proof plastic gloves and soon enough I found myself lost in the dirt.
It’s a wonderful thing to lose oneself for a moment.
As I gripped and struggled to release the roots of one nasty overgrown weed, it held on for dear life. While tugging away it occurred to me just how simply important this whole process is: not letting something unwanted grow deep roots in your life. And how simply obvious it is to remember to pull a weed when it’s small and just a sapling of the giant mess it could eventually become.
Just as I was pondering this very valuable life lesson a black JUMPING spider sprang from the greenery towards me. (May I just add here that it’s a downright dirty trick to give some spiders the ability to jump, as if they’re not creepy enough!) I shrieked, skidded backwards on the pavement and ended up on my back scratching my butt as I tried to scoot away from the jumpy little thing.
Then of course I looked both ways up and down the street to see if any bystanders observed my odd behavior. If only they knew that spider was trying to attack me. If only they saw what I saw!
I am happy to report I continued to weed, with one eye on the ground looking for creepies and the other watching my backside.
At the end of this day, I am reminded part of The Promise 365 is to weed away unwanted patterns and unhealthy habits. With each one I pull and tug at (sugar!) another seems to appear (spiders!). Such is the work of tending to my life’s own garden I suppose; the work never ends but if I keep putting in the time the flowers will keep blooming.
Sometimes the hardest part is recognizing a weed for what it is — before it gets too big.
Which brings me back to a good rule of thumb (green thumb that is):
If it looks like weed and smells like a weed … it’s a weed indeed.