Monday, 22 July 2013

Blooming Where I'm Planted.





Gillie left a comment on my previous posting and included the thought-provoking idea of 'blooming where I'm planted'. I realise it's something I've always tried to do, although at a few times in my life it has become rather more a case of making the best of a bad job.
Sometimes I have been where I didn't want to be, more often psychologically than physically.
For the past twenty or so years I have been mostly here, at home in my Victorian house, in my labour-intensive garden, mostly alone in the last six years of widowhood, surrounded by memories and echoes.

The family house, once rather crowded, is now comfortably spacious.
My husband's workshop, which I wrote about here......... well, look what has happened. Most of the plastic boxes containing nails and screws, the containers for lengths of string, the countless drill-bits and other assorted bodging and hitting tools are still in place in their wall-mounted compartments.
But the main space of his workshop has become a store-room for baby equipment.........the pushchair, high-chair, bouncing-about-chair, the baby bath and other essential items in pastel colours.
What was a severely, somewhat guarded masculine space has bloomed into something quite other.

There is much sadness in the thought that my husband and grand-daughter will not meet. He would have been totally captivated by her, a willing slave, as indulgent with her as he was with his own infant sons. But I wonder if he would have emptied his work-shop for her baby gear. I suspect he would have built another shed for the purpose.

But he has built a shed for what will soon become her purpose.
He built Walnut Cottage for our sons. It was their playhouse, but then it became a bike store, and later still a wheel-chair store. Now it needs to become a playhouse again.

The pattern of my life here feels like the seasonal changes in the garden, from the growth and freshness of spring and summer, to the ripeness and maturity of autumn before tipping back into the quiet solitude of winter. I appreciate these seasons equally.
I need them equally in my life.

I am blooming, not exactly where I'm planted, but where I am irrevocably rooted.

9 comments:

Zhoen said...

I've always been dubious about that sentiment. Lots of plants spread their seeds far and wide by sea, air and animal, or send out runners. And where else would we grow, but where we've put down roots?

I'm beginning to notice how each plant and weed, has it's spread, bloom, dying, hiding. Each takes it's turn, does a little dance, then steps back.

Sheds probably enjoy the change of internal scenery.

marigold jam said...

It must be so lovely to be rooted in a place filled with memories like yours. I have been on the move most of my life and cannot imagine how it might be to have a house full of memories but perhaps that is why I love it here in the West Country as this is the area in which I spent the longest time as a teenager and in my early 20s so my roots are here and not in a particular house perhaps. Life is all about change and I am sure your grand daughter will love to hear about all the memories at Granny's house in due course.

Relatively Retiring said...

Zhoen: of course, you are right. It's the roots that matter. I subscribe to the Gertrude Jeykll school of gardening, in which plants do their own thing to a large extent. The 'accidental' grouping of plants is usually so much better than anything I could have contrived.
It sounds as if you're getting as much pleasure from plant-watching as I do!

Marigold: roots are important to you, too, and your lovely photographs such how much the West Country means to you. I stand the risk of boring small grand-daughter, so will probably make it all into a written form for her.

Elephant's Child said...

I like the idea of blooming where I am planted. So much better than the times I have struggled because my roots are miles away.
And yes, a garden which chooses its own design has (for me) much more charm than the manicured variety.

Gillie said...

But that's the thing, Zhoen, I have never put down roots, I've been more of the far flung seed! My parents were living in a hotel when I was born, a early baby boomer so housing was scarce and that seemed to be the way for the future! I have lived in more than forty houses, hotels etc, attended 12 schools and the longest I have lived anywhere was Pennsylvania, in two houses for nine years! I was an army brat so moving was to be expected but the World Traveller has done a pretty good job of continuing the theme! The next decision, I suppose, is where to retire so all the children can visit!

Relatively Retiring said...

Gillie: I have some plants that bloom beautifully in their pots and can be transported to different locations.
Thank you for sparking off an interesting discussion.

Relatively Retiring said...

Elephant's Child: plants can live very cooperatively when they self-seed, but there is always that tendency to bully and strangle the neighbours. They need a few rules and a modicum of control.
The more I think about it the more like real life it can become!

Jenny Woolf said...

What a nice and thoughtful post. We are indeed just part of nature.

Relatively Retiring said...

Jenny: Thank you.