Saturday, July 20, 2013
I will admit that my other half and I are a bit above average when it comes to our gardening efforts. This is our fourth summer gardening together and I like to think that we're starting to get the hang of it. We've learned what plants do well (peas, lettuce, squash) and what isn't worth the effort (corn, cabbage, melons). We've brought in soil, which was deposited in our driveway in a hill and we moved it to the back yard with shovels, wheelbarrows and the help of family members. We start planning our garden in January and order seeds which we plant indoors beginning in March. This year we had a common problem in that our tomatoes were six inches tall and ready to go in the soil but it was still too cold to put them out.
The first few weeks that things are in the ground are always nerve wracking. Sometimes we have to cover plants overnight with tarps to avoid frost. But once June is in full swing and the days are long and sunny, things start to take root and flourish.
This summer is unique because I'm not working. I've been able to send much more time in the garden than previous summers. It has been therapeutic for me as well, as I've cried over and recovered from my loss, and thought about my future with my toes in the dirt. I'm usually pretty emotionally invested in the garden but this year I am even more so. I haven't decided if that's good or bad! I've lost a couple plants for various reasons and it really bums me out. My carrots are doing better than they ever have and I attribute that to all the time I've spent thinning, weeding and tilling around them. Earlier this week I harvested my first sugar snap peas. I bit into one right there in the garden. It was warm from the sun, sweet and crispy. I felt full inside, with pride and a sense of accomplishment different from previous harvests.
I do believe everything happens for a reason. There's never a good time for bad things to happen but the timing of everything that happened to me this spring couldn't have been better. If it was winter and I was cooped up in the house, I know my rough few weeks would have stretched on and on. Instead, even though I was sad or worried, I'd make myself go outside at least once a day to water the plants and check on them. I look forward to eating from the garden as the summer goes on, but especially this winter, when we'll eat salsas, jams and frozen veggies we've preserved. Even though it might remind me of a sad time, it will be proof of what I was able to do during that time. Sometimes it's amazing to me that I've accomplished anything at all over the past two months. If I can do this now, I know that when I'm healed and motivated, I will be able to conquer anything I put my mind to!