This memory was spurred by Alexandra of Brainy and Beautiful She posted a response about my iris that included her grandmother's garden. I was immediately hit with the image of my grandma's garden.
My mother's mother, my grandma Fallon, was a huge influence in my life. From what I have heard from my own mother, she was a tough task master as a mother. She was every child's dream as a grandma. I loved her passionately, she was my champion.
I spent the first years of my life with her over the summer. My mother was not meant to mother, so she sent me to grandma. My grandmother was a gardener. My grandmother was a strong woman and I believe she could very well have been a tough mother. But I loved her with every fiber of my being. And she loved me. And she was a gardener.
I have always associated her with trumpet vine. Always. She had a glorious trumpet vine just outside her front door. No one used the front door, it was just there. You came in through the back porch. The front of the house was my secret garden. It had the majestic trumpet vine, the multitude of iris and lilies and the whole display of crab apple trees. She had a perfect climbing tree in the back that was my first horse. It had a huge limb that I could sit on and ride over field and fence all day.
Grandma was older when my mother was born, so she was older when I was a child. Eventually she couldn't live on her own because of a bad heart and she came to live with us. My mother resented this greatly and I can understand her point. But my champion was in my own place, where I spent my real life. My grandma was always a wall between me and my mother, until she couldn't do it anymore because she was old and dying. But by this time I was old enough to champion myself.
She was a gardener. She instilled this in my mother and it passed to me. But I don't have a trumpet vine. I believe I need a trumpet vine. All these many years later, I need a trumpet vine to realize my grandmother's garden. To realize the seed she planted in a needy child who cried out to be tended, cultivated and admired. And to honor the gardener who tended the seedling.