Tuesday, 29 April 2014

How does my garden grow?

 I dream of making a garden: the best fun I have had with my clothes on for ages. The nursing home where I live have granted me my own patch of garden that I am responsible for. I dream that the gardener here might be able to do the physical side of things on my behalf.  What a joy that would be!

Gardening is a tremendously life-affirming activity because it means dealing with living things i.e. plants   It probably signifies that I have been thinking about life and growth (of the personal kind).  Surely this must be a flowering of the tree of Mindfulness: a delicious rising of the sap of imagination?   An increase in activity here is definitely one of its
features that I have experienced   lately.

I have recently put considerable effort into making my little flat here just the way I want it.  I have tried to make a comfortable, appealing and homelike place where my children can come and be with me and where I feel that I can be myself. Now my creative energies need something else to focus on. And so they have turned towards the garden.

It has been the best fun to imagine what my little patch of garden could look like: how it could change from season to season, where plants should go depending on their mature height, colour and leaf form, checking that I have chosen contrasting and insect friendly varieties, and checking that the plant-types are reasonably drought tolerant in order to keep watering to a minimum.   Whatever comes to fruition, I'll try to upload some photos in the summertime.

I feel that this focus on gardening is both seasonal and representative of my Mindfulness journey. I have tried to continue my meditation practice twice a day where possible (I started the week before Christmas). I have experienced several highs and lows since then though I have found that Mindfulness has sustained me throughout.  So
far it has provided a rock to cling to in a storm, but somewhere to bask in the sunshine as well. With regard to the MS I know that I have large patches of dead brain. I have seen pictures of these on my last MRI scan. But the brain is a mysterious and magnificent piece of kit. It is capable of compensating for its own shortcomings.   I am hoping that Mindfulness is doing just that for me.  Of course it is not a cure for MS but I hope that Mindfulness is capable of helping my brain to work smarter despite the far reduced brain area available. I spoke about this to my very interested neurologist recently.

And the best part is I get to take it with me wherever I go because it's inside me at all times. It's just an eyelash blink away.  And it's completely free!

If you fancy giving Mindfulness a go workshops are available at the Centre. Just ask at reception.

April 2014

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