“The hurrier I go, the behinder I get.” – Lewis Carroll
This quote seems to be the story of my life in the last few weeks. I’ve been busy trying to get a thousand different things accomplished and failing to successfully manage most of them. Not the least of these tasks is trying to accomplish a rather sudden and unexpected household move. While I’m normally pretty adept at handling change, one particular aspect of this change has me gnawing off my nails and fretting… the possibility that I may be living in a place where I can’t have a garden.
I know on a logical and rational level that this should be the least of my worries and that there are bigger concerns here – finding an affordable place in a safe location, for example. Considering I don’t know for sure that I’ll be without garden space, I really shouldn’t be worried about this aspect. Yet, I sat in my garden last night and had an emotional meltdown over the prospect of letting go of my green spaces.
When I’d finally calmed down a bit, I began to question my strong attachment to what is, essentially, a temporary and constantly changing situation. Plants come and go- a favorite flower may not come back up again in spring. A late frost may destroy all but the hardiest of species. Disease, bugs, and drought may take away the flowers that I’ve tried to so hard to cultivate. In short, a thousand things can go wrong even when I do have garden beds.
The only conclusion that I was able to come to is this – gardening doesn’t just make me happy, it’s a tangible form of spiritual expression for me.* By keeping a garden, I connect directly into the both the cycle of the seasons and the life-death cycle. It’s also a place of sanctuary for me – a private space where I can come when the world is raging. There’s been a lot of spiritual disconnect in my life lately as mundane issues take precedent and the thought of losing this connection has just left me feeling a little… well… lost. Ironic that I would feel this lost when I live in a place of amazing raw nature, surrounded by forest lands, mountain peaks, and waterfalls. It’s no exaggeration to say that there a thousand places within a short distance of me where I could go to connect with the cycles of nature. Yet, I’m stuck on the fact that I might lose a few square feet of flowers and herbs. Just goes to show that humans are funny creatures when it comes to finding their place in the universe.
*It’s true: I really am a tree-hugging, dirt-worshiper.