Meaning in everything. I turn over a rock and find bugs. They are showing me how to work. I watch the scurry and feel bad that I have wreaked momentary havoc on their doings. I put the rock down and look up at the blue, green, grey and white. A bird passes quickly and I get back to it.
The smell of the dirt calms my nerves and keeps me in my boots, big rubber things that keep out everything except what happens to fall in. I am not really living anywhere in particular so the feeling of presence and purpose holds me, reminds me what I am building.
It is repetitive, what I do during the day, pulling, pruning, sweeping, hauling, and digging. The rhythm of each chore is a different kind of comfort than I have ever known in a job and I look forward every morning to putting on my bulky overalls and heading out the door to work in the dirt.
For the first time in forever, I have a job that feeds me. I do not feel drained at the end of the day but physically, and I have this pulse in my muscles, almost every day, that feels like good use. I am working way below my education level and I am happy enough that tears come as I pull the stubborn and foolish grass out of the narrow cracks in the sidewalk.
I focus on the intake and the output of my lungs, lucky things breathing in lavender, rose, cut grass and lemon verbena. At the end of the day I smell it all on me and I don't want to wash. I do, and when I take off my clothes all manner of crawly and leafy things fall at my feet in a circle of gratitude.
I wonder how I ever did anything else. Why did I not think that this might be a nice way to go? How could I have considered sitting at a desk, inputting numbers and creating documents, processes, and programs? How, knowing who I am, did I think that would turn out? Looking back it seems predictable.
But it is easier to know myself in retrospect. I am crystal clear as an azure sky in summer as I float in and out of days that feel like liberation.
Less sure than I have ever been about my future, and more confident that I will be okay. The days stretch out into okay, into love.
The other day I saw four toads hopping out from under a tarp I had to move. They were all quite small, so small the thought crossed my mind that I might have already stepped on one and not known it. Still, the toads were beautiful, and I thought a good omen.
It is a lucky day when you find yourself in the company of toads.
I love being a gardener.
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