"I wanted to thank you. We've never forgotten your kindness and willingness to open your garden to us. This weekend my little one and I finally planted our own. It's not perfect and we still have so much to learn - but it was perfectly amazing. Thank you so much for inspiring us to never give up on this dream."
That email came just a few weeks ago at a time when I was getting out of the hospital, political discourse filled the air, and during some of the worst world and even US tragedies in modern history. Timing aside, it was the indescribably beautiful miracle of a family actualizing their dreams that hit home for me. Even in a time of such darkness, a seed had been planted and was growing. The fact that I was even a whisper of inspiration in the ear of their livelihood was enough to remind me why it is that we do what we do.
And on that accord, I went the extra step of asking Angelica and her family two very important questions. Their answers opened my heart and watered my eyes.
Why did you want to have a garden?
Luc (age 7): "Because I want to grow food!"
Bella (age 12): "I learned about GMOs at school and how pesticides and preservatives are put into our food. I think it's unnecessary because there are ways you can get food to grow without doing that."
Luis (Angelica's husband): "I have a dream of being a farmer and working the land. Creating life and growing food with our own hands is amazing. If money wasn't an issue, I would change my lifestyle to live off the land. I like the times of old where everything wasn't tainted."
Angelica: "Walking with my grandmother as she watered her garden was my favorite time of day when I was a little girl. It taught me to appreciate the little things and find beauty in so much. The color of the sky, the thousand shades of green, birds' wings, the smell of earth. I really want my children to find joy in the world around us."
What do you think about growing your own food?
Bella: "I think it's cool, but it's going to take a long time and I want to eat those tomatoes now!"
Luc: "It's beautiful! I love the leaves because they're my favorite color - green!"
Guy (age 10): "I think it's really cool. I wish we could also grow pineapples." (It's his favorite food.)
Luis: "For me, it's a small testament that we can really do it! This is a whole new experience for me - I've barely been able to keep a plant alive on my desk!"
Angelica: "It's amazing! Every new bud is an adventure and I can't wait to share our first harvest."
PS: This author is personally heading to the growers soon to gift Guy with his very first Pineapple Tree. Because everybody deserves to be part of the dream. And it just goes to show, when we speak our hopes out, the universe answers most assertively in its way, "yes, you can".