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heartstrings to seedlings

I’m sure you can tell by the weeks that have passed without a post that something has been going on.  I don’t have the courage to write about everything just yet, but let me just say it has been the most intense and scary few weeks I’ve had in all of my 32 years thus far.

Life has a way of organizing and prioritizing your time and energy for you. A few weeks ago, after I read this article, Chris and I sat down to list out some changes we wanted to make.  It is true, you have to make time to make changes. From which credit card to pay off first and how often we’d actually sit down and eat at the dinner table together to where we’d go on vacation this year and how we could afford to start an organic veggie farm in 10 years, we hashed out a real plan of change.  Two days later, I got some news that threw every possible plan out the window.  When something big happens with someone in your family, all bets are off.

I spent a week upset, trying aimlessly to make it through a day without breaking down, and feeling like I just couldn’t take one more thing.  I also really had my life put into perspective for me.  What was I getting so crazy about previously?  I realized I had everything I needed.  A home, a job, and my family.  All of a sudden work stress seemed so insignificant and the woes I had been feeling felt laughable.  And all of a sudden, I had something real to be scared about.

I hadn’t been home–really home–in over a week.  I hadn’t had proper sleep in that amount of time either.  When I woke up one morning a few days ago, I needed to see my little seedlings.  When I had left them, almost all had been growing strong and healthy, with the exception of some spindly celeriac.

I needed the moist smell of greenhouse dirt and life growing before my eyes.  They’d been under the care of Chris for that week.  I couldn’t wait to see how they were flourishing and what had grown and what might need to be placed into a bigger growing space.  What I saw broke my heart.  About 50% or more were withered up and unrecoverable.  In all that had happened the prior week, I had held it together as best as I could.  When I saw those seedlings, I sat down on the ground and had a wall-shaking cry.  I’ll bet that sounds crazy to most, but my plant-loving friends will understand how therapeutic gardening can be.

The greenhouse could have been too hot.  Perhaps Chris didn’t realize the dirt had to be soaked.  Maybe the circulation wasn’t enough for them.   Whatever the reason, they weren’t strong enough to make it and I had much more important places to be than to worry about being a perfect plant momma.

So, this evening, I salvaged what I could.  I took the 5 (out of 25) peppers and placed them in larger containers.   I also weeded out the multiple marigolds in each pod and brought some life back to the flowering kale.  Thankfully, I only lost a few tomatoes and I had only planted the ageratum because I had seeds left, so I felt no real loss over those. I do have two little baby ageratum seedlings trying to make it and boy am I rooting for them.

Strangely, I have a feeling of hope.  I feel like those 5 pepper plants will be the best peppers I’ve ever tasted because they are survivors.  They are just like my family–survivors in tough times.  I can’t wait until May when we have a little planting party here together and we can celebrate growing, family, life, and love.

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