This morning I finally took the time to go out and clean up our garden for winter. We are not overly meticulous gardeners and the end of the season chaos that ensues in any garden is always three or four times worse in ours. This morning I was out there ankle deep in maple leaves and yanking on stakes and tomato cages. At one point I noticed I was tiptoeing around the swiss chard and pepper plants out of muscle memory and all at once everything shifted.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about holding onto the past. Sometimes going as far to relive it emotionally, let it make decisions for me and allow it to predict my future. Standing in between the kale and the mint everything seemed very simple. The garden is a thing of the past. It doesn’t need to be tiptoed around. We are all in desperate need of releasing the past. There is nothing still alive in there (except for that crazy mint). There is nothing to be held sacred.
The future of next year’s garden holds far more significance.
In fact, by tiptoeing around the garden or by not pulling up the roots and composting those random rotten tomatoes I am doing more harm to next year’s garden. I have to do the clean up to move on and have a fruitful, abundant next season.
Even though I specialize in the body (and not the mind) I hear people holding on to the past every day I’m in the office. People often report body issues to me that happened years ago using the present tense and when I push for more details they seem disappointed that I’ve pointed out that the information is history not active. Our bodies do carry histories with them, but bodywork and exercise are two great solutions for continuously erasing that history.
We want to allow the new cells to grow and remake us.
It wasn’t a particularly stellar growing season in our household. This summer we had enough chard and kale to support a significant smoothie habit and we made a lot of amazing parsley and mint pesto , but for the most part it was a mediocre crop. I’m much more excited about next summer when we can experiment with growing collards for the first time and maybe succeed with squashes.
Rather than holding on to the past and remembering for years on end how our zucchini plants were eaten by the birds and squirrels and how some of our tomato plants never grew taller than three inches, instead I’m interested in composting, clearing and making room for the future.
What a good excuse to get my hands dirty, grit my teeth and not be careful for a little while. How can you revisit your past and imagine pulling up roots, toss around some dirt to help with the decomposing and treat it like it is dead and gone rather than something still very present and active in your life?
Copyright: subbotina / 123RF Stock Photo