Saturday, April 18, 2009

Watering as Therapy

While I usually don't post on the weekends, today is my day to water all the gardening plots for my class. For the first few weeks, they need watering every day, and each of us are now volunteer waterers. As my gardening teacher explained it, since the area hasn't been worked for a year, we'll need to water a lot for the first week. And we have about 30 plots at the Learning Garden. So, I've decided that perhaps watering other people's garden plots could be construed as Watering Therapy (although I don't plan on carrying an umbrella like the woman in the image from Corbis).

A few days ago, my son bought a new iPod and gave me his old one, which he loaded with some of the music I like. When I come up with a list, and/or give him CDs, he'll add more. iPods are the one technology I know nothing about. At one time or another, I've ranted that kids (and adults) who go through life wearing earphones are missing out on connecting with other people, eavesdropping on conversations (which, as a writer, I would terribly miss), and so much more. But, when I put on the earphones the other day, slipped the iPod in my pocket, and silently sang along with Bob Dylan, I decided that maybe I've been too harsh, and perhaps listening to music might be a component of water therapy.

FYI...Last night after entertaining friends, I couldn't fall asleep for hours. In my sleepless state, I found a bunch of blogs about nature and gardening that I genuinely least at first glance. So, here are a few recommendations:

Tom Mangan of Two-Wheel Drive (a blog I do know and like) has written a great post on Hiking as Therapy.

While Phillip Oliver's Dirt Therapy isn't truly about horticultural therapy, he has created a beautiful garden in Northwest Alabama, and his photographs of flowers should make you smile.

Donnie MacKay's photographs of Hebrides at Photo Hebrides are wonderful.

Caroline from Caroline at Coastcard [Land and Lit] and I share two interests and she also posts some lovely photos.

And the four women who write Garden Rant usually make me smile because they're so opinionated and so very knowledgeable about gardening.

Have a lovely weekend!


Mariposa said...

Will check those blogs for sure!

And I'm in this generation and some gadgets just bother but not iPod...though I don't use it all the time. Ah, I love Bob Dylan too!

Have a great weekend!

Gianna said...

watering is a wonderful time to practice mindfulness...we have to water all summer long, though not daily, but sometimes it takes a good half hour--of course, I'm not well enough to stand that long right now, but in theory I'd use it to meditate.

it's very easy to make it into a meditation...and I've done it in the past.

you can actually do this washing the dishes too!!

I have a dishwasher now, but didn't for the last six years and I did try to make dish washing meditative...there are certain things that lend themselves to mindfulness meditation..the basic idea is that all of life can be experienced in this mindful manner, but when we're learning these sorts of mundane tasks are good places to start.

have fun.

Wellness Writer said...

I guess an iPod is just one of those things I didn't know about. I was still using a portable CD player. And why doesn't it surprise me that you like Bob Dylan?


Wellness Writer said...

I would guess that I've been practicing a form of mindfulness meditation for years when I weed and do my other home improvement tasks that take hours, days, weeks, and months.

But, now that I'm feeling so much better, it will be fun to boogie!


fran said...

I happened upon your site because of a link from it to the blog of which I am a contributor,

There are two things I want to say. First, congratulations on starting to garden. I am a huge advocate of gardening in order to faciliate one's mental and physical health (which a book I authored discusses in great detail).

Secondly, thank you so, so much for your blog. It is much needed and written in such a beautiful, personal style that it will touch thousands and thousands of people who are afflicted with depression.
As a matter of fact, I'm going to send the link onto friends of mine now who run a not for profit organization called Minding Your Mind that deals with mental illness and addiction, especially in teenagers.

FYI,, the blog to which I contribute, is a group of 5 gardening professionals with a variety of expertise but who share a similar vision: to inform and inspire individuals to learn as much about gardening as possible so that they can live more creative, healthier lives.

Will continue to follow your blog.
Fran Sorin

Wendy Love said...

What a wonderful pastime...watering a garden! I like doing it best in my bare feet. I went to the Learning Garden site and was delighted at the concept. We have something similar in our area in one of the public parks. They even make their own compost, and their flowers grow a lot bigger than mine ever did. It is a peaceful place to spend time. No wonder God began it all in a garden.

Wellness Writer said...

Dear Fran,
Thanks so much for your comment. I genuinely appreciate it. And I was heartened by what you said about my writing.

Yesterday afternoon when I returned from watering (and I guess I was so tired I didn't notice there were any comments), I read posts from and (I clicked on the contributors without knowing you'd commented), and learned so much from both.

I certainly appreciate your recommending my blog to your friends, and welcome you as a reader as well.

Clearly, we share sensibilities about living creative and healthy lives, and I'll put your book on my wish list.

Again, thank you!


Wellness Writer said...

Dear Wendy,
Yes, I would imagine that "barefooted watering" feels very good. For some reason, my feet itch if I go barefoot on our grass, but I like the visual image. And yesterday I began reading about compost and it may be my goal for next year.


Linda said...

Hi again, after a long while.

I savor reading your thoughts and clear and beautiful language.

Watering a garden has been therapy and pleasure for me, too, and I miss having a garden at home -- the one at Prosser was heaven.

I love being fully present to elements and senses, digging and turning dirt, giving it all my attention, getting results. Joy!

Wellness Writer said...

Dear Linda,
So glad to hear from you! While I don't remember your garden, I'm not surprised that you gardened. Maybe that's why you always seemed so peaceful and content, at least to me.