It’s been my newest project and my reason for being offline so much lately. For the first time in my life I am building a garden. Day in and day out I dig and plant, hammer and staple, water and weed. There is something soothing and, well, down to earth about gardening.
I can feel my connection with the earth healing some deeply hungry part of me. In the garden I am capable and strong, I am able to work for hours and not make my headache worse. I don’t know if it’s not straining my eyes on a computer screen or just that gardening is as replenishing as it is exhausting but my spoons don’t seem to be at risk when I am in the sun and communing with all the bees and plants.
And boy do we have bees!! There is a house a few doors down with a hive and their happy little bees buzz around my Gerbera Daisies, Blueberries, Blackberries, Strawberries and Tomatoes. It’s possible that they love the herb garden even more. Best of all, the big blue fountain in my planter garden gets teeny buzzing visitors who fly over, settle on the rim, and delicately sip at the water in the bowl.
I can watch the bees for hours.
I put up a hammock under the tree and when I am not gardening or working I lie there smelling my spearmint, magnolias, and tomatoes while the bees buzz around me, resting from time to time on my knees. The sun is warm and the sound of the busy birds and insects is soothing.
I seem to be coming back to life with the plants, growing stronger and standing taller every day. The long lonely years of pain and hardship look as though they may actually be in the past. I work, I garden, I walk, I swim. I take the kids places. I am once again living an outside life. I am not confined, alone with my cat, to a dark and quiet room watching the world pass me by on a dimly lit computer screen wishing desperately that I could be free. I am no longer a useless partner, mother, daughter, or friend. I have things to offer the world again. I have people in my life who walk beside me and encourage me to do what I can while reminding me to not overdo it. They value and cherish my contributions even though they are not what they used to be. I am learning to do the same. I suppose I am being cultivated as much as my garden is.
I love how responsive plants are to my labors. A drooping plant will perk up within minutes of being watered, a seed poke through the earth within days of being planted. Every day I see the results of my labors blooming around me and I can’t help but bloom with them! I laugh and dance and sing again. I wake up early, even though I hurt, to take my medication so I can get to the garden faster.
I have more energy now too so I can cook and walk to the grocery store and clean. I make delicious food for my family again and get pleasure out of seeing them gobble it up. My kids are eating vegetable soups and meatloaf and guacamole again, thrilled I am back in the kitchen making it. Dan is touched each and every day I make his lunch for work, happy I have thought of him and taken the time to insure he has a gracious plenty of healthy, delicious food while he keeps the peace in the brutal heat. My parents enjoy the food I cook and my mother loves that she is not doing the cooking.
I am slowly learning that no matter what my professional future holds, whether I can litigate again or not, whether I can earn a decent living or not, I can contribute to the family in a meaningful way.
I can be a goddess of hearth and home if I cannot be the career woman I dreamed of being. I find joy and a profound sense of accomplishment in the tasks I once deemed menial. Now they are the example of improved health.
So my life is blooming again. I think it’s time to bee calm and garden on.