Recently (over the summer months) I volunteered for a community garden near where I live. I joined in with the group because I wanted to meet and possibly make new friends; learn more about gardening and the cause was something I could get behind (the food was being grown for a local food bank). I love gardening and believe most ardently in growing your own food so when I was asked to write an article for the local community newspaper about my gardening experiences I enthusiastically agreed. That one article led to a regular monthly column in the paper written by yours truly; I’m called “The faithful Gardener” and enjoy writing my monthly contribution to the paper.
Not long after joining this group, something changed in the group’s attitude towards me. I don’t want to get into the details but I ended up leaving the community garden badly hurt and feeling quite down about my experiences, because of these hurt feelings I stopped tending my own vegetable garden at home. I literally stopped doing the weeding and only went in there to pick a few beans and some tomatoes. My garden suffered from the neglect.
I’ve stared out at my garden for the past month knowing at some point I would have to get back in there and put it down for the winter. Its funny too when all this upset was going on in me over the summer stuff happened in my garden, my beets, carrots and potatoes just didn’t grow this year and my squash got a terrible mold and completely died at the height of its growing time. I only got three puny buttercup squash (my favorite) this year. If I didn’t know better I would say the garden was reflecting that something had gone very wrong in my world!
Once I got in there this week and began working on my garden bit by bit, turning the soil over and taking out all the weeds and the roots of weeds, so they don’t come back. I’ve been apologizing to my garden about my neglect; I FEEL the forgiveness and I am allowed to forgive myself. Then I think about; in the past, whenever I have been deeply hurt I will associate something that is good for me with the hurt and stop doing it because it brings up the memory. I wonder if I can apply this philosophy to my creative life. I have suffered so much rejection around my creativity that it is difficult for me to go back into it. Weeds of lethargy have grown around my creative garden. I have to be brave and go in there, do the weeding and turn my creative soil over bit by bit and ask for forgiveness and forgive myself. Its hard; its difficult, but its the only way.
Thanks ladies of the community garden, if this unpleasant experience had not happened this summer I might not have had this epiphany of the heart!
© Lorraine Hughes 2015