Mari is a marigold that lives in a beautiful garden. She is a happy flower. She has many friends. Life is good in the garden, but not without some hard times too.
One of the best parts of the garden is in the morning when the kind and gentle Gardener comes by. He wears big rubber boots and overalls. Sometimes he carries thick work gloves tucked into one back pocket and a pair of pruning shears in the other. Mari doesn’t like to look at the shears. Many times, the Gardener comes with a water hose which he uses to carefully water the flowers that live there. As he moves around the garden, he talks to the flowers.
“Hello Mari. You look happy today. Here’s some cool water for your roots. And let’s see how you’re doing under these leaves.”
He lifts up Mari’s leaves and bends down to take a look. Mari is a little afraid, because she knows that under her leaves there is place that is not pretty.
“Oh my little Mari, you have a broken place. I’m so sorry that has happened to you. I’m sure that hurt you badly. My sweet little Mari. It seems that some bugs have gotten into the broken place and made it worse. Don’t worry, we’ll take care of it. My sweet little Mari.”
Mari wasn’t sure, but it seemed that the Gardener had tears in his eyes.
He first cleared out some of the rocks that were on the ground around her. His hands were gentle and he hummed a bit as he picked some twigs out of her leaves. She was happy to see them go and it made her feel cleaner right away. She was relieved that he didn’t fuss at her for being broken; she loved having his approval.
But then the gardener reached into his back pocket and pulled out the shears. Mari was suddenly quite afraid! He had never used the shears on her before! Not the shears! Not the shears!
Mari felt the sharp pain as he cut the broken and buggy part away. It really hurt! She was suddenly angry with the Gardener! Why did he do that? That wasn’t making her better, it was making her hurt! She felt a little betrayed by the Gardener; he had always been so nice before. She wanted to say “Leave me alone!” but as she looked at him, his eyes were so full of kindness and love, that she stopped. Her heart melted. And she just cried a little.
The Gardener pulled the broken part away and threw it in a bucket. He gave her a little more water. Then he spoke to her gently.
“OK girl, I know that hurt. But it’s going to be better now. Now that we’ve removed that broken, buggy part, you will be sprouting new buds in no time. I can’t wait to see how lovely you will be.”
And he was right. Soon Mari was putting out new leaves and buds and was growing like a weed, only she was a flower. The gardener still came by every day, but Mari didn’t fear him or his shears anymore. She knew that even if he did have to trim a part of her from time to time, he did it because he loved her. Even if it hurt, it was for her best. She had learned to trust him.