Marigold has it all: the kids, the husband, the successful multi-level-marketing business, but sometimes ‘having it all’ actually means ‘doing it all’. Receiving a letter from her personal hero Ms Martin (the CEO of her MLM business), Marigold is convinced it’s because of her great sales and performance. Panicked that everything must be perfect for the upcoming visit, Marigold rushes around jet washing the driveway, devilling eggs and applying a fresh plastic covers to the sofas. In her haste she clips her kids into their car seats then remembers a cake inside. While she goes to fetch it, her youngest, Matthew, unclips himself and toddles out of the car. Marigold emerges from the house (cake in hand), and reverses out of the driveway only to hear a sickening thud followed by a scream. Marigold jumps from the car and finds Matthew on the ground, his leg clearly broken. Later, in the hospital, Matthew sleeping peacefully with his leg in a cast, Marigold is drawn and quiet. She learns that the real reason Ms Martin was coming to visit was simply because Molly invited her. It had nothing to do with Marigolds performance.
The story of Martha and Mary, where Martha tells Jesus to get Mary to help her in the kitchen, but Jesus replies that Mary is doing the right thing by sitting at his feet. I love this story as it shows Martha’s depth of relationship with Jesus, she’s not afraid to tell him what to do! But also his response - direct and challenging but also with a familiarity that reflects his love for Martha, even when she’s exasperated and bossy. My adaptation takes place in suburban Manchester in the 90s. My mum was surrounded by well-intentioned but nutty Christians in the early 90s who were convinced that doing everything for your kids and husband was the only way to parent. Marigold’s efforts to look like the most successful, loving parent actually cause the greatest pain for her child. In her realisation that Ms Martin was coming to visit simply because she’d been invited; Marigold also realises the value of relationships above all. It’s important to me that Marigold reflects Martha’s heart which was right, she wanted to honour Jesus, but that she went about it the wrong way. Ultimately it is connection that we all need in life.