My backyard treasures will soon return
Nature and humans need each other and together we thrive and survive.
We moved to our current house which is 116 year old about 3 years ago. The first thing I noticed was the grass and trees in the back yard. The grass was brown in spots, and there were empty patches with only dirt. The tree trunks looked old and decayed as if they were dying and they did not have many leaves. There was a feeling of abandonment and neglect in the air and it smelled bad. I reasoned that the backyard needed humans the same way we need the oxygen produced by the trees, and I was right. Over time, just our living in the house and walking in the yard has had a tremendous effect. The grass now is a rich green and most of the dirt spaces have filled in. There is no longer that old musty smell and I enjoy going in my backyard now, as opposed to walking through it from the carport to the house.
Today I'm standing on the upstairs porch, drinking my morning coffee, looking down on my backyard and envisioning what is to come. I watched neighbors children playing in their backyards but out of caution I did not allow my grandchildren to do so. They have not been out since an egg hunt on the Monday after Easter, because of COVID-19. In my mind I am seeing the grass a little fuller, a little greener and more leaves on the trees. I can hear the birds chirping and the squirrels squawking as they climb up and down the trees and the side of the house, chasing each other. My vision includes my grandchildren running through the yard playing tag and hide and seek.
My oldest son is cooking on the grill and I can smell the scent of the smoke coming up to my nostrils. My husband is sitting in his chair, waiting on someone to fix his plate, because we have spoiled him. Music is playing from a CD and it's probably from the 70's or 90's which are our favorite decades. A gentle breeze is blowing and the sun is shining bright in the sky. Cars are passing by on the side street, teenagers are walking to the store. Ivy is growing and running fast up a tree in the eastern part of the yard. The big walnut tree to the left brings shade because now it is in full bloom.
The grandchildren call to me to come play and I go down the steps and begin chasing them through the yard in a game of "Tag you're it". The smell of the freshly cut lawn is exhilarating and I notice honeysuckles entangled in the side fence. Birds are on top of the carport eating cherries they have plucked from the tree that is in the very back of the yard. The neighborhood cat runs by and dogs 3 house down begin to bark. The sun goes behind the clouds for just a moment and returns bringing a gentle rain that does not last long. The scent of the fresh falling rain mixed with cut grass and cookout smoke is just right. Someone fills the plastic swimming pool and the grand kids put on their swimsuits. They jump and splash in the water and the sound of their play is like therapy, truly music to my ears.
I sit on the grass, making sure my bare feet touch the earth because I believe in earthing and grounding. My daughter is going in and out of the house bringing food and supplies. The grandchildren continue to run and play and I feel so at peace. I can see children in the backyards of several homes, who are taking advantage of the day.
The temperature is just right, not too hot and not too cool. Someone's cell phone rings as is normal in this day and age and there is conversation back and forth between the few of us gathered. My granddaughter notices baby birds in a nest in one of the trees and an egg in a next in another. We all take a quick look and are amazed. As we back away the mother bird comes with worms to feed her babies.We are watching nature at work and loving it.
Everything is as it should be on a summer day and I can see it all as I stand on my upstairs porch. This used to be our normal, but for months the backyard has been ignore, except for mowing the lawn and walking to and from the vehicles. No children playing, no one sitting in chairs, no cookouts or any outdoor fun. It was beginning to have that smell of neglect once more, but now everything is as it should be, at least in my mind. The trees, grass, and birds need me as much as I need them. We are in this together and should co exist if we want to survive.
I believe this to soon be my reality once more. I cannot accept that the pandemic will go on indefinitely. I was meant to run barefoot through the grass as I do in my vision and have done so before. I was created to spend more time with nature than inside a building. Science says the negative ions produced from the ground and the oxygen from the trees help to counter the effects of being near cell phones and lap tops all day. Soon my dream will once again be my current situation and I eagerly await that day. For now, however, in this, moment it’s like the song from Soul II Soul.
It’s “Back to life, back to reality, back to the here and now,” but not for long. Son and very soon, all I have envisioned will become my reality.