I have now been "living single" for 7 years, divorced for almost 4. Wow, what an impact that had on my life. I developed an acute love for gardening around the beginning of that tumultuous time.
My Daddy has been gone for almost 2 years. I still sometimes involuntarily pick up my cell phone to call him. Other days when I drive past the cemetary where he lays at rest, I say "Hello Big Daddy". My love of gardening increased after his death.
My Aunt Deta, to whom I was extremely close, passed away last month. There have been numerous bleak days as of late. The lower she got, the more I dug in the dirt. As she worsened, my time in my yard increased. What is it about sticking your fingers in the earth that has a soothing quality to it?
I now have a quite lovely yard. But oh the torment I endured for it to get to this place. I have mandevilla growing up an arbor that encases what I call my "secret garden". My friend Sharon bought me the vine in remembrance of my aunt. There is also yarrow, old fashioned cannas, and leatrice which I purchased the week after we lost Aunt Deta. The beautiful topper on her casket had bold purple leatrice in it. It gives me lovely thoughts of her to see it blooming. The area of my yard that I love most is my "tropical paradise". A banana tree that has been on earth much longer than I resides there. It grows to some 12 feet in height yearly and produced some very pitiful bananas last year. There is a small fountain that is multi-tiered and has a dancing frog on the top level. Lantana, daylillies, orange cannas, blanket flowers, irises, and verbena thrive. My mailbox bed has lillies, a clematis Nanna bought me last year, and vinca all blooming profusely. Each time pour water to that small bed, I think of my Dad. He owned and operated a snowball stand each summer for years. The post my mailbox is on is the bright red he painted it, originally holding up the porch on the snowball stand.
Not only does my yard soothe my injured spirit, it brings me immeasureable joy. Nothing brings more contentment than having something on the grill, my patio table set to perfection, my yard blooming exuberantly, and expecting company for dinner.=)