Today I started a new adventure in anxiety conquering~ Gardening. I say gardening but I’m not exactly getting involved with my actual garden. It had a falling out with a canal flood a decade ago and nothing has grown in it since. I bought pots. Expensive pots that look like barrels to be precise and made me do a bit of a jerk-flail at the checkout in Homebase. At least they earned me lots of nectar points and will hopefully stand up to the weather. They are an investment. These are things I keep telling myself. Anyway, I grew up gardening and loving it. My grandmother had a lot of stuff growing in her garden. Flowers were out the front for show and she was happy to leave that to Granddad as she wasn’t too fussed if he stabbed them and killed them dead. Her vegetables were out the back and they were the serious business part. I took care of them. * preens *
My grandmother would stand at the kitchen window which overlooked the vegetables and potter around while giving me instructions. I was trusted not to stab things and to be careful and harvest the veg. It was a cool bonding session if you will. I was very proud of my gardening abilities and then my grandmother wasn’t well and we didn’t re-plant things and now it has been over a decade since I got my fingers green in a way that didn’t involve hauling large piles of grass into the bin. I looked after everything from strawberries to rhubarb plants, potatoes, cabbages and green beans on their poles. At the time the only thing of the above I really liked were potatoes but it was still fun. In fact out of those things the only thing I don’t like now is rhubarb and it was always the most fun to haul out of the ground. I had my own wee tool box and set of gloves and I did I mention I was very serious at seven about the state of my potato plants?
Anyway, today I just decided to take the plunge. If a seven year old can keep these plants alive then twenty-one year old Grem could at least attempt it. So off I wandered into Homebase before I could change my mind. I left with ‘buttercup orange’ flower things, strawberries, compost and some vegetable seeds along with two large barrel pots and a trough thing. It did cost a lot but at least now I have enough nectar points for a 70cl of rum. Priorities. I haz them. Anyway, that was victory one over the general anxiety disorder because there were a lot of ‘what if they die?’ ‘what if I’m wasting money?’ ‘where will I put them?’ ‘I should just go home’, and various other questions floating around my head along with the general feeling that I had snapped. I challenged my way around the rose bush section. If they die, I’ll replace them and hopefully learn how not to kill the next lot, it is my money to waste and somewhere cause I have a pretty big garden. There.
Getting home I was filled with excitement. Excitement about being outside in my garden and that is unusual for me. People can see me in my garden. I don’t like that. They look and they make judgements and I don’t like it. Today I was too occupied with my strawberry plants to care. I get anxious about the shed usually, mostly because it is a death trap filled to the brim with stuff ready to fall out and dent my skull. It has happened to others so it isn’t just a figment of my anxiety. I actually spent ages trying to get out the relevant tools though and wasn’t thinking about the lawnmower threatening to fall off its perch and rearrange my brain. Part of it is basic distraction technique but I think a lot of it was being so happy about one thing that it overpowered the negative thoughts.
Plenty of people walked past my garden as I sat on my knees and wrestled soil into the barrels and dug out holes for my plants but I just didn’t think about them too much. They were not important; the positioning of my plants were. I was very proud of myself when I got all my pots ready and I spent a long time changing their positions and mucking around but it was great. I was calm. It really is therapeutic if gardening happens to be your kind of thing. Also, because it is only a couple of pots, I don’t think it will get too overwhelming for me. I’m not sure if my carrots will grow because I’m not convinced their trough is big enough but the seeds were 99p and 99p is worth the enjoyment I will get in taking care of them. I need to do things for myself because I’m the one with the illness, the one that needs to find ways to get better. So yeah, it was fun and creative and calming and I really want my strawberries to grow man cause omnom. In time for Wimbledon would be awesome XD