Mothering itty bitty vegetables from seed to harvest has been a strange desire on my bucket list for years. Carrots, with their knobby roots and wild stems, have always been a particular fancy of mine.
Every summer I fantasize of the satisfaction that must follow yanking one of those stubborn vegetables from the ground. I imagine firmly gripping each bushy stalk and giving a good tug, then brushing away the earth to find a whole carrot.
There it would be, revealed for the first time, dangling from its stem and from my hands. It would be perfect in all of its little blemishes and strange bumps, in all of its slight imperfections. It would be a small miracle.
Just a few weeks ago, I took some steps to fulfill this dream. Nestled safely in my arms, I carried my seeds and rake to the yard. I plowed the dirt until it was dark and rich, then drew my finger into the soil and made neat rows to plant. The seeds were poured out of each little envelope, delicately cascading into place before being patted over with dirt. The thirsty seeds were given water.
Through this process I am learning about gardening, but also about life. The way we tend to our gardens can teach us how to tend to our passions, to our huge life dreams.