I am more myself in my garden than anywhere else. Its the place I feel most grounded. It is my happy place, my church.
I’ve always loved flowers. Learning and memorizing scientific names is a FUN activity. Laying in bed, as I fall asleep, I am planning the shape and composition of the beds. I have even started many of my flowers from seeds in flats to be planted months later. When I meet someone at a gathering, I will usually bring up the subject to see if we have that connection.
Why do I love gardening so much?
Meditation comes to mind.
I’m in the zone.
It’s my “come to Jesus” time.
It has always been a time of concentration and connection. The feeling of being body tired at the end of the day as I drop into bed felt so gratifying accomplished.
Not gardening after so many years of study, play, devotion, attention, and focus would seem foreign…an abandonment of my true self.
I remember several years ago when I was attending a very exciting church. At one of our Sunday fellowship times, a man (a father, a professional, and a leader of this church) stood up and talked about his commitment to the church and his devotion to service. He talked about his garden and his passion for seeing plants grow and bloom. Then he went on to say that he was getting rid of his garden to focus his energies on his family and his focus on serving others.
I sat there feeling a connection…broken.
I looked at him with new eyes. Not with excitement and respect for his decision. But with a sense of…loss?…disappointment?…fear?
If this church supported, or encouraged, its members to sacrifice something that seems to have brought deep joy and peace, whoa. Is that the place that will support and encourage…me, my personal growth, my journey?
He was giving up love, a passion for what appeared more spiritual. I imagine that he was applauded and encouraged after his announcement. I…even many years later…imagine him giving up love, giving up devotion, giving up selfless attention to beauty.
I don’t go to that church anymore.