At this time of winter many people think there is nothing to do in the garden. Funny thing is the gifted green finger people seem to be busy out in the garden all year round. I have heard it said that solitude is a good place to visit, but a dangerous place to stay. It does seem that healthy moments of inner solitude can be achieved by spending time in nature and actually being able to hear your own thoughts instead of the constant drone of life that is thrown from all directions.
I spent a few hours with an avid gardener friend of mine recently only to be amazed at how much there was to do to prepare for the coming seasons ahead. It did seem to be all about the 'seeds'. Making sure the raised beds were ready to take the new seedlings. Planting out lots of little seeds and then awaiting for the new little plants to emerge. A mood of satisfying repetition set in as confidence built in the expectations for future months. I had never thought of a garden as actually having a skeleton, but with no foliage around the bare bones of the garden, it was obvious.
I had not really thought of the late winter months as being the restoration and repair time for a garden, yet there we were. Fixing the fence, organizing the shed, cleaning the tools. I experienced a real sense of calm through this process and noticed that nobody was actually talking at all. Just steadily 'doing.'
It made me think of the saying of Martin Luther King Jr., "The time is always right to do the right thing." The peaceful solitude I experienced was so devoid of any stress, anxiety, or pressure that I could not help but appreciate what healing qualities nature has just by being present with it.
There is a right amount of solitude for each of us. Have you enjoyed those mindful moments lately?