It is that time of year again when dandelions are in full bloom everywhere. Some folks may look out at their lawn and see that it is spotted with yellow and rush to find the best way to get rid of them. I look outside and feel connection, love and happiness. Over the past few years, I have gotten very good at spotting them; over the past 11 and ½ months, I have gotten to be phenomenal at spotting them, though I will never be as good at it as Matthew!
Matthew could spot a dandelion from 100 yards away, while going 65 miles an hour, through the window of a car. As soon as he spotted one, he would point and yell, “look. LOOK!” and tell me to pull over to pick it for him. This was not always the easiest request to grant. Sometimes, we would be able to stop and other times, I would have to remind him that we were in the middle of traffic and it wasn’t safe to stop. This, of course, would lead to the promise, that as soon as we saw one that was in a safe spot, Mommy would stop and pick some. I got very good at knowing which parking lots, neighborhoods and houses they grew at. As promised (he would always remember;), I would stop at the first quiet place, pull over and ask “how many?”. Usually the answer was his age (which was always his favorite number), then I would pick that amount, hand them to him and he would spend the rest of the time in the car, holding them so close to his nose that it would turn yellow by the time we got to where we were going. He liked everything about dandelions: the color, the smell, the soft feel of them. The simple yellow “flower”, made him so happy.
As it starts getting warmer, dandelions are popping up all around (though in NC, I am lucky enough to be able to spot them all year). I still, whenever it is safe, stop and pick them, each time, seeing Matthew’s sweet, happy face.