September 1, 2011
Garden blogger Jessica Walliser with dad and son on a farm
Courtesy Jessica Walliser
It seems like just yesterday, my dad and I were taking my son, who could barely walk, out to our old farm. Now he’s in school!

I just put my son on the bus for his first day of kindergarten. As is probably the same with all other mothers, my head is filled with mixed emotions. Part of me is so very proud of him, as he stepped onto that big bus like he owned the joint; another part is so sad to be loosing my best bud. No more weekday trips to the zoo or the playground. No more fascinating lunch conversations over grilled cheese and peanut butter carrots. No more lazy mornings, cuddly afternoons and spontaneous adventures. I’m the one going through withdraw—I think he’s going to be just fine.

And so, after the bus pulled away, I walked home and into the backyard. I fed the chickens and stared at the garden for a while, thinking that now that my real baby is off to school, I can return to my first “baby,” the garden, for some therapy.

For many years, before my son arrived, my garden was a child of sorts. I put all my nurturing, all my worrying and all my energies into it. Granted, it was a different garden then, at a different house, in a different town, but I feel like it’s going to happen again now. At least for the next few weeks, anyway, I’ll return to the garden and plunge into it, trying not to miss having my boy next to me, planting seeds, digging holes and playing pretend. 

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