“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.”
Robert Louis Stevenson
I am a work in progress. I am still discovering this fact, and I most likely I will never be completely finished. This is the way of life. Maybe it is why my gardens are forever changing. They mirror my life. As I make changes in one, changes are inevitable in the other. These two are inextricably tied together as I discovered a few years back which is how this blog began.
Lately though I have been getting into the “poor me downward death spiral”. You know one little thing goes wrong and as you are dealing with it another blows up and it just keeps coming. You think you can deal with it, but at some point you throw up your hands and start to wallow in self-pity, become frustrated, depressed and down and down we go. I can tell you self-pity does nothing for me…it has no redeeming qualities except you have a good cry.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, I fell this winter at work on a slippery floor and injured my knee which in turn put strain on my other knee, my ankles, my lower back and the cycle of the aches, pains and injuries just keeps going. There was little gardening going on, and it finally culminated with another ankle sprain last week preventing me from attending a family event I helped plan and was so looking forward to attending. But I really could not take the plane ride with the pain I was having. So I had to postpone my trip and seeing my family who are scattered to the wind, and don’t get together too often.
It is not the end of the world, but the “poor me downward death spiral” started in earnest. Good thing I was sick of the self-pity and the constant frustration, and decided to take control of the situation. But how to move forward, and do I have the strength to continue to deal with all this… it is not the end of the world and it could be worse, right?
My garden has endured terrible conditions this year, but it has continued to bloom. Maybe not at the same pace as years past. Some plants barely bloomed or were a smaller version of themselves, but they have not given up. There is no pity for my plants. If they don’t perform, I tend to baby them for only so long before I yank them out, and replace them. Of course I secretly believe this tends to help them want to perform better in the future. Perhaps I can take a lesson from these hardy, persistent plants.
These days it feels like I need to break through many barriers, some of them self-imposed. I have endured far worse and will have to again. It may take summoning all my strength and willpower to break free, or maybe giving myself some of the compassion I reserve for others. I might need time, rest, assistance-but it is OK to indulge in these if needed. And my resistance to a solution is OK too. It is a natural reaction after all. I may need more time or a willing ear to listen to my moaning. I know deep down inside what I have to do, but it is all about the right time for my acceptance of the solution.
It will take some serious self-talk and self-love though. And once I get through the issues, I usually come to a greater understanding of myself; the lesson I am ready to learn but maybe a bit unwilling at times to face. I found this wonderful quote that really spoke volumes to me…and it is from one of my favorite American authors:
“Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great. When you are seeking to bring big plans to fruition, it is important with whom you regularly associate. Hang out with friends who are like-minded and who are also designing purpose-filled lives. Similarly, be that kind of a friend for your friends.” ~Mark Twain
When I seek these friends they don’t placate me or drag me down. They listen; give me a kick in the pants and offer help if needed. I have “weeded out” people in my life until I am down to that small group I know I can count on, and who know they can rely on me.
Interestingly, I found a recent blog post from Leo Babauta@zenhabits very helpful. It is called The Three-Day Monk Syndrome. It goes into how to make significant changes and not just starting something and then dropping it in 3 days or 1 week. A very interesting read to get me moving in the right direction. I am the only one who can make gradual changes in my life to help any issue I am experiencing. So I am starting with small steps, and will be reminding myself daily why I am doing this and keeping the momentum going (as Leo reminds us). It is nothing radical; just adjusting my schedule to allow myself to start moving every day to build strength and endurance. I have to start somewhere and I think a 10-15 minute walk is doable. Once that is a daily habit and the knee is better, perhaps biking again. Whatever it is, it will be a constant forward movement knowing there may be days I have to drag myself through it or love myself a bit more. But there really are no limits to what we can do or endure once we put our minds to it.
Note to self: New Mantra this summer….no limitations!
“All the concepts about stepping out of your comfort zone mean nothing until you decide that your essential purpose, vision and goals are more important than your self-imposed limitations.” ~Robert White
The pictures here are of recent or continuing blooms in my garden.
Next up on the blog: I had promised a post with GBBD combined with Garden Lessons Learned. That post will be just in time for Thursday. I felt the need to do a Life Lesson post today instead given recent events.
Then it will be time for another Garden Book Review on the 18th followed by Seasonal Celebrations revealed on the 21st. I hope you will join in for the Seasonal Celebrations meme.
As June ends, it will be time to look at another Simply The Best native plant growing in my garden.
I hope you will join me for my posts, every other Tuesday, at Beautiful Wildlife Garden. There will be a new post tomorrow.
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