I returned to my garden yesterday after a rather grueling work trip. Last week’s focus on “fascinating” was extremely helpful while I was away. But returning home to my garden immediately improved my mood. It was like coming home to a surprise party of plants. In seven days, the espalier apple and miniature pear have both blossomed, garlic and rhubarb are going strong, overwintering collards have appeared, and the hops have happily wound their way around the garden Buddha.
Garden as Touchstone
My garden is a touchstone and a focal point in my life. Gardens by their very nature connect us to everything – beauty, sustenance, the earth, our senses. Can you be a gardener and not feel those connections? Other words that bubble up when I focus on my garden are joy, peace, sanctuary, and home. Of course my garden is part of my home, but I actually mean something deeper. All gardens have a sense (to me) of being home, a place we should hang out, a place we should be, a place of belonging and connectedness.
So in choosing garden as the focus word this week, I am celebrating being home and near my garden, but also the idea that the gardens takes us home.
This Week’s Practice
For my practice this week, I will be paying more focused attention on my own garden and how we connect, but also being mindful of other gardens, noticing their unique forms and the energy and creativity that went into bringing them to life.
If you don’t have a garden of your own (living plants in pots count you know) and are playing along with Focus Words, you can also adopt this practice of tuning into gardens everywhere.
“I love spring anywhere, but if I could choose I would always greet it in a garden.” Ruth Stout
For more information on my mindfulness focus word experiment click here.