To tend: (verb) to pay attention; to apply oneself; to watch over
I was pulling weeds and planting some flowers my neighbor gave me as the sun was slowly sinking in the west. Should I put this white penta here? Or over by the petunias? How about this gold zinnia? I paid attention to how everything would look together. I cleaned up the weeds and smoothed the mulch. I dribbled water from the hose. I stood back to ponder, to think, to admire. I picked off a wilted leaf. Straightened a bloom.
I tended my little flower bed.
I paid attention to it. I applied myself to caring for it. I watched over it.
I'm thinking about the word "tend" this week. I have a bunch of busy work to do: the usual grocery runs, the errands to Walmart and church and making deliveries. Lots of writing. I often get bogged down with my "To Do" list, even when it is just the mundane things that fill it. Do you know what I mean?
But I wonder what would happen if I made my "To Do" list my "To Tend" list?
Somehow, it feels different when I call it that.
I can tend to making those appointments. I can tend to the food situation. I will tend my house, to make it feel nice. I will tend my health. I will tend to the needs of others.
Tending feels like mindfulness. Gentle, caring looking-after. Paying attention to and watching over. It feels like love.
I like that.
What are you tending this week? Does your To Do list feel different if you call it a To Tend list?