life in the garden

This summer, I'm working hard on my green thumb, which has been, historically, disastrously nonexistent. I've had two goals:

Goal one? So far, so good! I ate my first batch of basil last week by way of pesto and it was excellent. I can't wait to try the tomatoes.

Goal two? I can't even. Those hydrangeas need more water than I do, I'll tell you what.

Last week, when I realized they were all brown after me being gone for a week (I should have hired a plant-sitter), Muff had to intervene. She told me to deadhead them. I asked her if I should use scissors or just yank the tops off. She laughed and said definitely scissors.

She told me you have to cut the tops off because, when there are brown flowers, the plant will use all of its resources to rejuvenate them. And, in turn, the other leaves will lose out on the hydration.

As I was cutting the tops off, I got to thinking about how we're kind of the same way. If we don't care for our whole person, and we neglect certain needs and parts of ourselves, they start to go brown and can impact us in so many other ways. Then, it takes a lot more energy to get them back there where they need to be.

For a long time, I neglected the rest part of myself. I slept way too little, I was never home, I never slowed down. And, even when I was firing on all cylinders in other areas, if I let it go too long without remembering to slow down, my entire life would crumble. And then I'd have a period where I'd have to put it all back together: emotionally, physically, spiritually.

But now, I've learned that I need time alone. I need sleep. I need time to pray, to think, to meditate. I need time to hydrate that part of my life, instead of breaking down and deadheading it.

There are phases of life, I think, where we're forced to put all of our energy toward one thing. During times of recovery, healing, building, creating - those all encompassing things may call for everything we have. And that's OK. In fact, it can be really beautiful. 

But during the every day way of life, it's so important to remember that everything is connected - we have just one mind, body and spirit and all three rely on one another. What we eat, do and say impacts our whole person and, if we let them, allow us to blossom and grow. And that really is beautiful.