A Gift of a Bee
Posted by Bonita Jewel
I am without a vehicle today, as my husband dropped the van off at the shop yesterday to get a couple things tuned up before our trip to Colorado next week. Usually, on Thursdays, I take the kids to school and stay there until 11:30, helping the students with their reading and literature. Then I head over to Fresno City College for my Spanish class. As soon as the class is over, I drive home, eager to get started with my work-from-home work for the day, as I have fewer evening hours than usual. I teach a class from 6:00 to 8:00 at Clovis Adult. In short, Thursday is my marathon day.
But today, I’m sitting on a bench at Fresno City College, wondering what time I’ll actually get home. I forgot to bring my homework and to-do list, so although I have a myriad of tasks, I can’t really get any of them done. So I’m waiting.
I glanced through my weekly planner, which is often more of a “so that’s what I forgot to do” notebook.
A green slip of paper fell out and I picked it up. It has a rough pencil drawing of a bee. A big bee. Twice as big as the flower it’s heading towards. The bee looks more like a blimp. A smiling, striped blimp with wings. The flower looks a bit worried. And there’s a butterfly hiding behind the flower. She’s smiling.
Beneath the bee, in block letters, a message reads, “I ♥ MAMA”
It is a note from my six-year-old son. He drew it for me when he was five. When he was deathly afraid of bees. Seeing the size of that bee, it’s no surprise he was so scared of them.
I wondered why he would draw a picture of something he’s scared of. And then I figured it out. It’s not so much the bee factor, or the frightened flower or hiding butterfly. It’s the message. “I heart mama,” written in block letters on paper he chose because of its color. Green; my favorite color.
Usually my son draws vehicles. Lots of vehicles. Of every type. I have a drawer that is solely devoted to vehicle drawings, and it is brimming with colorful sketches back hoe loaders, fire trucks, rescue boats, and jet planes.
But this picture is of a bee. It’s green. And it says, in childish scrawl, “I love mama.”
That’s why I keep it in my planner. Why I take it with me wherever I go. So that, on days I have too much to do, or days I have nothing to do, I can be reminded of what’s really important.
My kids. My inspiration. And sources of some of the greatest love I’ve ever known.