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The Unexpected Gardener

​Are you feeling that what you know and take comfort in is being overturned… and blended with other’s s**t? That, my friend, is spring 2020 and the collective tilling of the soil of our lives — of humanity — as we prepare for new growth.

The COVID19 pandemic is having us rethink how we do things, why we do things, and who we do them with. It’s simple at times (which pair of sweatpants should I put on today) and complex at other times (when should businesses reopen?).

As many of us shelter in place in the comfort of our homes, we have time to consider what we’re going to hang on to and what we’re going to let go of as we tend the soil and plant the seeds for new growth in a new normal.

What we chose to let go of is the fertilizer for new growth. I don’t mean material stuff, but thoughts and beliefs that need to be shed if we are to live (grow and blossom) in harmony with one another and nature.

Beliefs such as ‘I am not enough, I need this or that (thing, job, partner, you-name-it) to be complete’ or ‘I am better/worse than so and so’. That s**t needs to go.

“All that we are is the result of what we have thought. The mind is everything. What we think we become.” ~ Buddha

“The truth you believe and cling to makes you unavailable to hear anything new,” ~ Pema Chodron

The best way we can create harmony rather than discord is through tending our garden with love and care, and a few wheelbarrows full of patience. Nurturing the seeds of kindness, compassion, truth, strength, and grace in our garden and ensuring we don’t trample on another’s garden, will help us all to be our best selves.

“We are not the survival of the fittest. We are the survival of the nurtured.” ~ Louis Cozolino

Over the last couple years that I have worked with the brain injury community I have met many incredible gardeners. With life as they knew it suddenly and dramatically different, they walk into a yoga class or meditation session with an open heart and open mind ready to till the soil and plant new seeds. I learn so much from their commitment to learn, grow and adapt to a new normal. As we all have become unexpected gardeners, may we, too, commit to doing the work, trusting the process, and being patient as the seeds take root, grow and blossom.

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