Daily Archives: April 30, 2007

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pesky little things, aren't they?

But I see dandelions and I remember good things.  When I was a kid, my grandma used to tell us that as soon as the dandelions came out, we could go outdoors barefoot.  Dandelions, for good or bad, will always be associated with my grandma and the feeling of walking in tall grass barefoot.

When I see dandelions I'm also reminded that beauty and usefulness are in the eyes of the beholder.

Most people want to kill these weeds - eradicate them from their yards in order to maintain an ocean of perfect green-ness.

Others see them as a food source.  My local supermarket sells dandelion greens in the salad section.  Tea from this herb settles an upset stomach.  The blossoms can be made into wine.

Some also see this plant as a cheerful and triumphant announcer of summer.  It's hard to be cranky when you look at such a cheerful yellow (and persistent) blossom.

We need to remember that about people also.  The student population that I work with - many people would choose to not give birth if they knew they would be having a child with this level of disability - but like the dandelion, they are part of God's creation.

My job is to teach these people to do jobs - "employment training specialist" - we go to job sites and learn skills.  How many people know that at a particular hospital in our town, when they preregister for surgery the packet of paperwork is collated and  stapled by either the students I work with or others like them?  Or a few churches - does the congregation know who cleans their church (in the case of my classroom, I know that they do and appreciate).

For the most part, the students I work with are a joy (like all of us, they have good days and bad days).  They are cheerful and triumphant announcers of the strength of the human spirit.

In some ways, we are all dandelions - sometimes we're unappreciated, other times we're valued for who we are and always, we have the opportunity to spread brightness and cheer to our little corner of the world.