I’m writing this on the Ides of March, looking out my window at the piles of snow left over from yesterday’s late winter storm. In an odd sort of way, this reminds me of the final month of pregnancy. Those last few weeks of anticipation feel longer than the previous 34-36. There is such a yearning for new life to bless the world at this time of year, and I feel it rising within myself. I’m ready to do the Daffodil Dance!
When my son, Alexander (who is now 32), was a young Cub Scout, his troop sold daffodil bulbs in the fall as a fundraiser. Because I didn’t have time to take him around the neighborhood selling them, I bought 100 bulbs myself. The day after Halloween we realized that we hadn’t planted them yet, and the weather was starting to get cold. So, that afternoon when he got home from school, with garden tools and fertilizer in hand, we started digging an enormous trench in our front yard. There was a chorus of moaning and groaning going on between us, and I momentarily escaped into the warmth of the house to make hot chocolate while he assumed his solo performance of “WHY DID WE BUY THESE DUMB THINGS, ANYWAY?” Night came quickly that time of year, and I had to bring out a flashlight in order for us to finish our task. Cold and exhausted, we stood there staring at our hard work and agreed that it looked non-impressive, and wondered if this was all done for naught. All we could do was wait and trust that everything we did would give us the desired result. Patience, patience, patience.
November. December. January. February.
March. The watch begins. March 1st. No daffodils. March 2nd. No daffodils. March 3rd. No daffodils. March 4th. No daffodils. March 5th. Cat caught frog flipping around the Great Room. No daffodils. March 6th. No daffodils. March 7th. No daffodils. March 8th. First crocuses. No daffodils. March 9th. No daffo- dils. March 10th. Kids dye Easter eggs, and table cloth, and dish towels, and clothes they were wearing. No daffodils. March 11th. No daffodils. March 12th. First sighting of robins. No daffodils. March 13th. No daffodils. March 14th. Geese returning. No daffodils. March 15th. No daffodils. March 16th. No daffodils. March 17th. No daffodils. March 18th. No daffodils. March 19th. NO DAFFODILS!
March 20th, mid-afternoon, I heard the school bus stop at the corner. A minute or two later I heard screaming and whooping coming from the front yard. “MOM, MOM, COME OUT, COME OUT!” I quickly dropped what I was doing and ran outside to see my son dancing in the front yard. Little green shoots were peeking out of the ground where we had planted all those daffodils. For the next week or so we danced every afternoon until all those daffodils were in bloom! (I drove by the old house two years ago and was delighted to see many of them still blooming!)
In this era of instant gratification, we oftentimes forget that sometimes we have to wait for all of our hard work to bear fruit. For example, several people have been wondering why the search process for a new minister takes so long. There are many good reasons, much hard work, and several necessary steps that will ultimately lead to finding the best possible settled minister for UUSA. It all takes time, and we must trust that everything we do to support the effort will yield a positive result. Once the Search Committee is in place and begins their work, eve- ryone will have to wear their Patience Hat. Then, next spring, if all goes well, we can all do the Daffodil and New Minister Dance together!
May spring bring renewed wonder and awe and possibility for us all… Rev. Cindy