Friday, May 7, 2010

Finding joy on a Friday afternoon

I’m just in from planting tomatoes since I have some nice-sized ones that I grew from seed and the weather forecast looks tomato-friendly for the next week. When I dare to plant something even a few days earlier than my central Kentucky planting chart suggests, I look at the five day forecast to decide if I should take the gamble. Since it’s the end of the first week of May, I don’t think it’s much of a gamble anyway.

It was a joy to get into the garden and put my hands in the dirt after a week of meetings, driving to Lexington four days, deadlines and all the other accompaniments of an assignment-filled week. Being in the garden at 3:00 in the afternoon on a Friday reminded me of why I like working from home. No, I tend not to make as much money as I would if I worked full-time for someone else rather than freelancing, but it’s wonderful to be able to take a break and fill my lungs with fresh spring air. Working in the garden after a stressful week is a healing balm for my mind and body.

I think that’s what part of gardening is about. It puts us in touch with nature through the food on our plate as well as our awareness of seasonal cycles. There is a time to expect sunshine and rain that will nourish as well as months when we have to be enriched by something quieter, even darker because the sun doesn’t shine for as many hours. Living in harmony with nature rather than fighting against it can provide healing not only for us, but also for the world that sustains us.

The food we’re getting from the garden this spring is not only healing, but it also makes me look forward to mealtime. We’ve moved on from rhubarb to green salad, asparagus and strawberries. Two heads of broccoli are making stead progress for an upcoming harvest as are the new spring onions. I look forward to spending the weekend experimenting with how to reflect the harmony I strive for in my lifestyle in the food I prepare and eat..

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