I make a lousy gardener. I hate to pull weeds or volunteer weed like plants.
I always have hopes that the weeds will turn into something.
In sixth grade, we were living in India. My brother and I attended an International school - emphasis on International.
Every Friday was spent not in the classroom, but in an international experience. The 3rd Friday of every month, Ravi Shankar came to our auditorium and performed, teaching us the fine sounds of a sitar. On the 2nd and 4th Fridays, students were encouraged to bring a piece of their culture to class. We'd stand up and talk about our heritage, holidays, customs, clothing.
And on the first Friday of each month, our grade took a field trip to a museum, to a tomb, to the government offices or some other iconic structure. One Friday, my favorite trip of all, we traveled to an orphanage run by Mother Teresa. I was in for my first lesson on weeds.
The orphanage was crowded with children. Most were girls, many were infants. Some had imperfections, some were truly parentless, and others were just "one child too many" for the family. All were clean, simply dressed, shy, and feeling imperfect.
Our Indian teacher explained to us why these children were 'orphans'. "They are weeds. No one wants them. They were plucked, discarded."
I knew these children were beautiful. I knew they weren't 'weeds'; they were still alive. They were capable of blossoming. They couldn't be tossed away as long as Mother Teresa had them.