What Springtime Gardening is Teaching Me About Rest
It’s Spring, so how on earth can I write about anything other than gardening? This is one of my favorite times of year, invoking a sense of new beginnings, as the clouds of winter pass on by, and the summer sun gifts us with light, long into the evenings. Margaret Atwood famously said, “In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.” I wholeheartedly agree, as it’s felt long overdue to get my hands back in my gardening beds. There’s nothing like turning the soil, getting creative with what to plant, and turning my country music up loud as I get to work. Gardening is a lot of work, but there is a simplicity to it that brings me to so much joy.
I don’t have to tell you that in this day in age, and in our culture, we as human beings are constantly connected. We are connected to our phones, to our TVs as they rattle on about current news affairs, and to what everyone is up to, via little square photos or status updates, begging to be liked. It’s a busy, connected, and high-pace world we live in, and I think we can all agree that sometimes, we just need to disconnect. As a business-woman, wife, mom to five children, and grandma, this is no easy task! I am at someone’s beck and call almost all the time! Yet, I’ve learned that if I don’t make some time to turn the noise down, shut the TV off, or leave my phone at home, I’ll never rest. I’m not just talking about the napping kind, I’m talking about peace of mind – the importance of plugging back into the present moment to enjoy and just be.
Though I’ve learned to live at high-capacity and with a lot of responsibility resting on my shoulders (many of you know the feeling), I know that I am not exempt from needing a little down time. And perhaps, you wouldn’t equate getting your hands in some dirt with rest, but oh, gardening is the exact mental pause I desperately need! This simple rhythm I’ve grown so familiar with over the years of turning, nourishing, planting, and harvesting is what refuels my mind, body and soul, giving me the energy I need to get back to reality.
The beauty of gardening is that if I expect to see a harvest, I have to plant at the right time. The seasonal nature of gardening is one I can depend on, my window of opportunity to get outside, throw a hat on, and get to digging. It’s so easy to make excuses and avoid the very things we need, because we “don’t have time” or we “it doesn’t matter.” We mindlessly put ourselves at the bottom of the list, neglecting the important task of self-care and doing the things that fill us up. I’ll be honest and say that if the seasons of gardening weren’t so exact, I don’t know how often I’d do it! But because spring is a crucial and fruitful time, I have to get out there! I’m thankful for this, and little by little, I’m learning how to stop and let the simplicity of gardening nourish my soul.
At the end of a long day in the garden, I love snipping a few beautiful blooms and placing them in a vintage glass vase for my kitchen. Each time I see them, they are a reminder to me that taking a break is worth it, and that my backyard is calling my name. If only I turn down the noise, and listen.
What things or activities in life bring your heart joy and rest? If you garden, what are you planting this season? Share in the comments below, I’d love to know!
Until next time,