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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Mother Nature: Picking My Battles

One of the wisest bits of parenting advice I ever received was "pick your battles." Don't fight with your kids about everything, just the most important things. It true in the workplace and in marriage. It is also true when facing Mother Nature.

Sure, there is nothing to do but get out of her way should she summon a storm. Not all of her actions are as furious, though. While a formidable opponent, Mother Nature can be challenged, and I am learning to choose my challenges wisely.

We mow our grass and pull weeds. No dandelions in our yard! We edge and trim and work tirelessly towards an manicured lawn. Sorry Mother Nature. No wild oats here. Yet, this spring I have finally realized that Mother Nature strongly disagrees with much of my landscaping plan. I have been fighting for years to keep selected plants contained in certain areas. I can spend hours clearing a spot to allow my hostas and wood chips to shine and the very next day, pesky groundcover is making its way back in. It's partially my fault. Through the years I have planted and unplanted so many things, I scarcely remember. So, I throw in the proverbial towel. I give. Uncle. Grow whatever, wherever. I take no responsibility. And guess what. It looks beautiful. The many and various species are glorious when tumbled together, so much more interesting than anything I could have come up with. I have also stopped challenging Mother Nature regarding my vegetable garden. If she determines that the only things that will grow in there are tomatoes and kale, then we will savor tomatoes and kale.

Similarly, Mother Nature is waging quite the battle with my body. She pulls everything downward and I scramble to keep is up. She greys, I dye. She puts the kabash on my metabolism, I eat better and build muscle. I am trying to figure out how much to fight. My ever-increasing wrinkles annoy me to no end. I am using all sorts of topical remedies while my daughter (the aesthetician) continues to offer fillers and Botox. In the wrinkle department, I am not taking Mather Nature on just yet, but not ruling it out.

I may have most of the control over my yard, dear Mother, but I will be fighting for my body, skin and hair. And as I type this, it is thundering and lightening outside and I am a little scared.

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