I have a lot of plants. There are at least 20 in the studio alone. Now, that may not be that many to some people. Others may be terrified by the challenge of keeping them all upright and “breathing.”
Ten years ago, if you had asked me if I had a “green thumb” I would have laughed and ruefully shook my head no. Now? I still don’t classify myself as a plant expert by any means, but I’m good at keeping them watered and alive 🙂
A while back we changed to using these terracotta stakes in the pots. The stake goes down deep into the soil and then you put a large bottle filled with water into the stake. The clay seeps water slowly into the soil and waters the plant and its roots for a week or so. At that point, you go around and refill all of the bottles and you’re good to go for a while again.
Or so I thought.
This brown-thumbed gal noticed all the rest of the plant soil, away from the stakes, was super dry and wouldn’t hold any water when I poured a little extra in it. Which raised 20+ red flags. I had noticed some of the plants had dry leaves. That’s why I added a little water. I just didn’t expect this result. The ridiculously dry soil meant I either needed to soak every single plant in the sink for a while OR replant them with fresh, healthier soil.
In these conditions, the plants would continue to survive, not thrive. They could go on for a while. They were getting just enough to keep them going. And yet, eventually, they would languish and die…unless I did something.
If I wanted them to improve I needed to put in some time in the plant ICU, watering, nurturing, and coaxing hydration. I effectively painted my thumb green for a couple of days in an epic effort to turn things around before they got too dismal and depressing. As I thought about the project, inspiration struck.
Are there times you’ve found yourself in the same type of space?
You’re comfortable. You’ve provided for your needs: clothing, shelter, food, connection. Everything is just fine. Nothing to be alarmed about. Sure, maybe you could use a little more water or space. Your feet may feel a little tight in their shoes and roots may struggle to stretch and reach out. But really, it’s not horribly uncomfortable. It’s all livable and fine.
Yet…it could be better, couldn’t it?
You’re meeting your basic needs and yet perhaps a boost of fertilizer is required. A small change would make things SO much better. Be prepared though – that change is likely going to cause a little bit of a shock to your cozy little system.
The fertilizer you need comes in the form of irritation, discomfort, and shifting needs. Things fall apart and everything turns to crap. Issues you saw on the peripheral edges are now in your face screaming, demanding to be dealt with. Only after you’ve actually dealt with it will you find additional peace and healing. When you own the shit you need to, you shift into a better space with the possibility of new growth and WAY more room to relax and breathe.
Let’s take a job as an example. It’s a job. It pays the bills and keeps you going. You’re not in love with it and, truth be told, you’ve been mildly annoyed with certain aspects for a while now. But it’s comfortable; you know what to do and it’s better than dealing with the nightmare of updating resumes, applications, and interviews.
Or is it?
Where’s the joy? Has your mood been slowly slipping? Is your light getting slightly dimmer? Is it harder to motivate yourself to get out of bed and into those clothes that symbolize the profession you’re so firmly planted in? What fertilizer do you need to add to create a better environment for yourself?
I recently worked on my spring cleaning. Little steps got me out of a cluttered office and into a delightful space to curl up. A couple of new wraps were the perfect infusion I needed to love my wardrobe again. And cooking with my partner made eating in more enjoyable than the nightly “What do you want to eat? I don’t know…what do you want to eat?”
If you find yourself in need of a little shift, I hope you find the perfect amount of fertilizer to make life more comfortably enjoyable again 🙂