beauty…without a purpose

I love this picture. I took it at the wedding of some dear friends. They got married on the top of Mt. Soledad and these yellow flowers accented an already breath taking view of the San Diego Bay and surrounding area. After the outdoor ceremony was over and the guests were excused to get some snacks while the bride and groom took a few pictures, the chairs were transfered upstairs to the reception hall leaving the ceremony site dis-assembled and back to it’s more ordinary form. Having my three boys with me, this was the perfect place for us to hang out and wait. There was nothing we could ruin.

As my boys poked and bickered with one another, I saw the remains of the decorations on the ground and couldn’t help but take note. The purpose of these flowers – to add to an already stunning moment of a bride meeting her groom – was over. The party had been moved upstairs where other decorations awaited and these flowers were by now considered trash – the “purpose” of their beauty long gone. And yet, a lost petal perfectly positioned next to the happiness of a daisy with their brilliant color contrasting the dull pavement created a new moment of beauty all it’s own.

This reminds me, especially in my life as a mom, that beauty is often unexpected and can be found long after the crowd has stopped taking notice. Moms are often invisible and unnoticed. They are not professional athletes or politicians. They do ordinary things that keep life going but are rarely worth noting. Doing dishes, packing lunches, washing clothes, wiping noses, cooking dinners, driving people to their destinations, helping with homework – these are the things that we may notice when they are NOT happening but rarely notice when they are.

This flower inspires me and leaves me with a spark of hope that after the “purpose” of my beauty has passed and parts of me are saggy while others are acquiring wrinkles and going grey, that I – who I am and who I am becoming – still have moments of beauty of my own. There is brilliance and beauty infused in the pavement of my life as well.