Gardens & Missing You

May 3, 2024

I saw an older lady today, about the age you’d be if you were still here. She was outside in her garden, pulling weeds, planting— busy at work.

It made me think of you.

It made me miss you. It reminded me that on a day like today you’d probably be doing the same. Your yard was always blooming with beauty.

You’d have a smile on your face as you carefully planned each bud and specific arrangement. They always looked so strategic, so perfectly placed, because they were. It was something you loved doing, even though you’d always have a tender back for days after. The work was always worth the effort, it brought you happiness.

I never knew how much I enjoyed watching you, covered in dirt and mulch, decorating your yard so delicately, until you were gone.

When watching you do anything became an unrealistic experience, I started to realize how much I missed simple moments like that— observing you in your element, in your joy.

Even after all these years grief shows up with surprises, new ways to impact my heart. I never knew there would be, or could be, pain in passing someone, a stranger even, engaged in an old hobby of yours.

But there was— pain.

An ache of missing you.

A reminder of what you loved and what made you, you.

I miss you in the flowers, in the warm days where the sunshine would illuminate your hair and your smile, in the flowerbeds that were colorful and inviting all because of you.

I miss you in the things I still had to learn from you, like gardening and parenting and life.

I miss you today and everyday.

I miss you always.

Gardens aren’t the same without you, but honestly, nothing is. Today a stranger and a garden reminded me of that.

xox, Chels

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A wife, mother and educator who has Indiana roots and a passionate spirit. Chelsea is a sappy romantic, coffee junkie, book collector, and person who wears her heart on her sleeve. She’s sarcastic, full of jokes, full of tears, and enjoys writing most when life gets messy or complicated. In 2017, Chelsea's mother passed away. Through her grief journey, she decided to take her mother’s advice and share her writing with the world. One day she gained the courage to honor her mother's wishes and write. It turned out to be one of the best decisions she's ever made.

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