Saturday, October 11, 2008

Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

My mum and dad on their 50th wedding anniversary in 1997

Sitting at my desk in my home office today, I have a window open to my left. A gentle breeze blows the net-curtain inwards and with it comes the beautiful fragrance of Yesterday-today-and-tomorrow. (Brunsfelsia Pauciflora, Eximia). The sweet jasmine-like perfume is like the very breath of spring and the previous owner of my house did well to plant this Brazilian shrub close to the house. It is a fascinating plant: when the small flowers open, they are rich purple in colour, the next day they are pale mauve and on the third day they turn pure white. This creates a rare colour combination which gives the shrub a delightfully variegated appearance.

Popular and easy-to-grow, albeit a little old-fashioned, this exotic garden shrub evokes nostalgic memories of my late mum and dad. They always had a bush or two of this in their garden. I often wonder whom I actually inherited my love of gardening from: dad or mum. While I’m in the garden and I make an informed decision about moving a plant or re-planning a section, I know I get my practical know-how from my dad; w
hen I plant a romantic shrub, I realise this comes from my mum !
My mum and dad were married 54 years when my dad passed away. After his death, my mum only lived another sixteen months. I’d heard about people dying of a “broken heart”; with her, I witnessed this phenomenon first hand. She just could not go on without my dad.

Apart from teaching me about the Lord from an early age, I also learnt from them about a Spirit-guided couples relationships, . My mum, although she had a very strong character, always respected my dad, while he loved her in return. I was never told this, I just saw them, as with everything in their lives, living out these Bible principals. "As the church submits to Christ, so you wives must submit to your husbands in everything. And you husbands must love your wives with the same love Christ showed the church. He gave up His life for her." (Ephesians 5: 24, 25)

According to my much-thumbed Readers Digest: Gardening for all Seasons, the shrub Yesterday-today-and-tomorrow can be grown in regions with only light to moderate frost. Here in the Free State, we do experience frost during the winter so my plant looks a little worse for the wear at the moment. Therefore I’ve not photographed it for this post. Instead I’ve added a print of my dear parents taken on their fiftieth wedding anniversary. This is exactly the memory I have of them in my heart.

My post today is a tribute to my parents...

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