Digging deep to find yourself

Deb Williams with a pot of jasmineDolceDolce’s Deb Williams shares her thoughts on gardening and taking root:


Taking Root

By Deb Williams


In the past, I never though about gardening, let alone understood the effort and perseverance that it entailed.


It’s been almost a year since I said goodbye to my big city life and settled into suburban bliss. But it was not always so. In the beginning it was difficult to adjust. The slower pace of life, the lack of having every convenience within a short
stroll made me unhappy.


One evening, as I sat on the burgundy-stained deck in my newly-acquired backyard, I decided I would take up gardening. Through hours of research I learned about hostas, peonies, black eyed susans and other foliage. I set to work and planted my lavender, delphiniums and laid out an ambitious vegetable patch. I even invested in some hardy
gardening tools and took out a subscription to Canadian Gardening, which has
become my holy grail.


I have discovered that one of my favourite writers, Jane Austen, had a green thumb.
Every day I dug a little deeper. I tried a little harder to build a garden and to find my place here, to even find a voice in this new chapter of my life. It wasn’t easy, with squirrels attacking the spring bulbs and a family of geese that took up residence beside my Bracken ferns.


Trying to learn the individual characteristics of every sapling, my patience wore thin. I didn’t realize that I was being nurtured by nature and all her glory. I was wrist-deep in triple-mix soil when it dawned on me that this wasn’t just any garden, this was me putting down roots, finding my inner voice and letting it speak. Magically my personality emerged as the snap dragons and cosmopolitans took root. Like them I started adjusting to my new life.


Now every evening when I walk amongst my little green friends, there is peace and
solace. When the cardinals flock amongst the lilac bushes, I find beauty in the
world around me. Everything has come full circle.


Through the grit and the damp mulch, I have learned a valuable lesson: Life is not
about where you live and what you lost, it’s about what you gained and what
you discovered along the way. As I wait anxiously for my 22 green tomatoes to
change colour, I know what I have found – myself.


So on a warm summer evening, when the gentle evening breeze whispers through the purple lavender bushes, I know where I’ll be. In my garden with a glass of chardonnay and a good book.