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  • Laura Dumont

Grow


I love mowing the lawn. It's my meditation, my therapy, my exercise. My husband, Chris, and I have an unspoken agreement that I mow the lawn to get away, to plug into my phone and listen to my favorite girly singer/songwriters while I sort out my thoughts and get some greatly needed physical activity. Today I mowed the lawn for the first time this spring. There are dandelions popping up all over and the grass is still yellow and patchy in places from the very long winter we had here in Minnesota. As I mowed row after row, I bent over, trying to yank up as many weeds as I could, but there were too many. I am open about my anxiety and occasional OCD, and as I was mowing this morning, thoughts of panic and fear crept in. What if the grass doesn't fill in. What if the yard turns into a dry, dirty plot of dust? What if my whole front yard becomes filled with dandelions? What if the clover takes over everything and the grass dies?

You see, when I came home after 19 days in the hospital after our daughter died in 2011, the grass in our yard had become so dry and yellow. I cried when I saw it for the first time. I was fighting for my life in there so no one mowed, no one had watered during the hot July days I was in a coma and recovering from kidney failure and massive infection.

Guess what. The grass recovered that year. It grew, and I have spent every summer since taking care of the lawn because it is mine. It is my project, my refuge, my place where I go to recharge. Mowing and listening to Ben Folds and Ingrid Michaelson today, I heard a voice telling me, "It will grow." Every year I worry the yard will turn to shit, but it doesn't. It grows. We all do.

I put it out there a short time ago that I want to run my own home decorating/organizing business for families on a tight budget and who just want help making their homes feel more inviting and comfortable. Chris calls it my "Decorganizing" business. (p.s. don't you dare steal his brilliant name for my dream job. I am the first "decorganizer"ever, he claims.) But I'm scared. I know absolutely nothing about business, or about being in charge of a business. I just want to be a stay at home mom to our four kids while helping my friends decorate and organize their stuff. But the thing is, I think I might be good at this, and I love the idea of helping others learn to love their homes. And earning some cash while doing it, well that's okay too.

Confession: I don't always love my home. Just this week, I had to move our little boys' bunk beds around so we could access the window in their room and let in some fresh air. While I liked the layout in their room, it wasn't functioning for us. Now there is a little less space to play, but the window can be wide open to let the breeze in at night. Change is really inevitable, especially with a growing family. Their room will change again, I am sure of it!

Whenever I'm in an anxious funk, like I was out in the yard this morning, I try to talk to myself like I would talk to one of my friends. The grass will grow, Laura. And the business will also grow at just the right pace for me. I will learn along the way, and I will be patient. And I will try to remember to ask for help. It might come in the form of some fertilizer, or in the form of some business advice. Either way, it's all going to be okay.

xo

Laura

#homemaking #youmeathome #homedesign #yardwork #mentalhealth

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