This is a picture of a corner in my backyard that is presently in nearly full bloom. I took this a few days ago, and now the peonies (the dark green plants with the raspberry-colored buds in this pic) are in full bloom and are lovely. I like the way the plants in this corner complement each other. Also, those shrubs with the silvery blooms? They are a summer lilac, a late blooming lilac with silvery pannicles of flowers and a strong lilac scent - I'm not in love with the flowers, which lack the charm of true lilacs, but the scent is heavenly, and makes the yard awash in the scent of lilacs for another three weeks. So I thought I'd share.
Sometimes friends who also garden are surprised that I'm not familiar with the botanical or latin names of my plants. To me, at least up to this point, gardening isn't about that. I remember the common variety names (the hardy geranium in the picture is called Johnson's Blue - it's fabulous), and I research the hell out of plants before I buy them. But once planted, the latin names are just details. What matters to me is the act of planting, nurturing.
I WILL bike tomorrow. And for those of you who have heard my uneasy/displeased voice saying that I'm not writing...I'm writing again. Day two, but I'll take it.
It seems to me that one of the reasons I find myself unable to write, or sometimes when I find myself flirting with depression, it's because I want to stop wanting what I dream of, and be happier and content with what I have. I wrote last year about this - about being satisfied with what we have - but this is a shade different from that post. That one was about accepting and being satisfied with the path you've followed, not reliving and retracing the path that brought you to now. What I'm speaking of here is my dreams - the future me.
This isn't some brilliant new revelation - passionate people want to throw themselves into whatever it is that they are passionate about. I want to write, garden, bike, dance, sing, read, teach, drink wine, travel to the thousand places I want to see, cook meals for a kitchen full of friends and family, laugh often and hug strangers who look like they could use it. But I need to also work at a job that pays actual money, clean my house, eat sensible meals comprised of foods that are less convenient, juggle finances and doctor's appointments. Did I mention work at a job that pays actual money?
Lately, things have been too much for me. I see that NOW. :) But in the moment, I often do not know it. I'm too busy dealing with the necessary next steps. That makes me good in a crisis, good at coping with ambiguity and change, as they say on my performance reviews at work. But. BUT. It's all fine to cope well with crises so long as I'm remembering to measure them against my needs. This is the wisdom I seek these days: know when things are too much, and reset my priorities. Now, not six months from now, or "when this crisis is over." The crisis always wins, and there will always be another. Being happy means living in the now, and the now includes any number of simultaneous crises. I'm pretty good at differentiating real crises from "someone else wants me to freak about this, isn't that cute" crises - but even so, the real ones can arrive in pairs or triplets. So I need to live in the now and keep my priorities, those that feed my soul, intact. Otherwise, I stop doing things that feed my soul - see the "i want to" list above. I sacrifice, as the person who is my "other me" describes them, the parts of me that are my essence. Unacceptable. Yes, I'm aware this is something we all do. I'm just the one talking here. :)
Tomorrow is Father's Day! If you are a father, enjoy your new grill/tools/books/home store gift card/special breakfast...whatevah. And for the fathers who read these words - thanks for all you do to make your small people happy, healthy, safe and loved.