Monday, July 25, 2011

The Grass Will Grow Back

This week Maggie has opened my eyes to what our future holds with her. Destruction. I have been working on getting everything more organized in our tiny apartment, and when I was cleaning, she broke one of my favorite lamps. Shattered into a million tiny pieces. Sienna did something similar a couple of years ago and broke a lotus candle holder that Grant and I bought on our honeymoon. Luckily we had started taking a parenting class at church taught by the wonderful Brother Hales, and the Sunday before he had given us a story called The Grass Will Grow Back. 

The Grass Will Grow Back
When Mike was 2, he wanted a sandbox, and his father said: “There goes the yard. We’ll have kids over here day and night, and they’ll throw sand into the flower beds, and cats will make a mess in it, and it’ll kill the grass for sure.”
And Mike’s mother said, “The grass will grow back.”
When Mike was 5, he wanted a jungle gym set with swings that would take his breath away and bars to take him to the summit, and his father said: “Good grief, I’ve seen those things in back yards, and do you know what they look like? Mud holes in a pasture. Kids digging their gym shoes in the ground. It’ll kill the grass.”
And Mike’s mother said, “The grass will grow back."
Between breaths, when Daddy was blowing up the plastic swimming pool, he warned: “You know what they’re going to do to this place? They’re going to condemn it and use it for a missile site. I hope you know what you’re doing. They’ll track water everywhere and have a million water fights, and you won’t be able to take out the garbage without stepping in mud up to your neck. When we take this down, we’ll have the only brown lawn on the block.”
“The grass will grow back,” Mike’s mother said.
When Mike was 12, he volunteered his yard for a camp out. As they hoisted the tents and drove in the spikes, his father stood at the window and observed, “Why don’t I just put the grass seed out in cereal bowls for the birds and save myself the trouble of spreading it around? You know for a fact that those tents and all those big feet are going to trample down every single blade of grass, don’t you. Don’t bother to answer. I know what you’re going to say.
‘The grass will grow back.’”
The basketball hoop on the side of the garage attracted more crowds than the Olympics. And a small patch of lawn that started out with a barren spot the size of a garbage can lid soon drew to encompass the entire side yard.
Just when it looked as if the new seed might take root, the winter came and the sled runners beat it into ridges. Mike’s father shook his head and said, “I never asked for much in this life – only a patch of grass.”
And his wife smiled and said, "The grass will grow back.”
The lawn this fall was beautiful. It was green and alive and rolled out like a sponge carpet along the drive where gym shoes had trod … along the garage where bicycles used to fall … and around the flower beds where little boys used to dig with iced-tea spoons.
But Mike’s father never saw it. He anxiously looked beyond the yard and asked with a catch in his voice, “He will come back, won’t he?”

When Sienna broke the candlestick holder I gave her a hug and told her it was okay. Maggie was oblivious to how much I loved that lamp, but I'm okay, it's just a lamp. What's left from the pair of lamps, and candle holders now sit together on a bookcase, waiting for me to give them to the child that broke their other half. Today I woke up to find silly putty in my new rug and I just about lost it, but I decided to pull out the story, and read it again to remind me that the most important things in life aren't things.


Kim said...

Great lesson! Thanks for sharing. Katie is always into things as well and has broken a few things also. I will try to remember this story as we head into the terrible twos!!!

A Tale of Three said...

That brought tears to my eyes...I hate that my baby has to grow up even though I'm excited to see who he becomes.

Inspired 2 B Me said...

I'm so glad I took that link from Facebook. I so needed to read this and remember. Thanks for sharing it. Hope you are all doing well. Hugs! -Tina

Jill and Dane said...

I loved this post! So true. You are such a good little Mom Nat. Oh and in reference to your other post about the primary teacher ratting you guys out...has she never been around kids before? One of my sister's kid's teachers said to them, "I'll make you a deal, you don't believe everything your kids say about me and I won't believe everything they say about you". Sounds like Sienna's primary teacher doesn't have a clue. :)

The Kradolfers said...

I don't think you know me. We used to be in 81st ward a long time ago, but I stalk your blog every once in a awhile. Just wanted to say thanks for this story! We have a very destructive little girl ourselves and a 6 mo. old son who I'm sure will cause just as much havoc very soon.