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Image by Karma Rhythm

Chapter 1:

Gardening and Mental Health

As I began to connect with the gardeners around me I felt more comfortable at the garden and started showing up more often and caring for my plants more. I began to see my garden improve and in late February I finally saw one of my seeds sprout. As I started talking more with Andy, my neighbor in the garden, he began to help advise me on what weeds to pull and what to maybe leave in. He also welcomed me into his plot which is inspirational to say the least.

One unique thing about my plot, is I have a mailbox that came with it. I really didn’t know what to do with it at first, though I am tempted to decorate it now. Eventually, I opened the mailbox and found next to a huge spider a bag of some unidentified white powdery substance. It was a shipping envelope with the address blacked out and I did not know at first, but this would be a great way to break the ice with both Ferdinand and Briar who I had not previously chatted with at this point. I even asked Andy who sent me to Wayne who actually proposed a theory as to who was behind the whole thing: that it belonged to a very eccentric elderly gardener who had not been to the GHGP in years. The fact that nobody knew what was in there and we were all so interested, kind of brought the whole area together. It also helps that all of our plots are right next to each other. 

As of writing this, I have not yet done a community work day and this is mandatory each quarter. I thought I was just busy with the classes I am taking, but I eventually realized I have probably put this off for so long because of my initial anxiety. I do think that I could work in the community setting now--that I am comfortable enough to. Although, with my current schedule a solo day of community service will probably work out better. I’m emailing Seth this week about an independent assignment as this is an alternate option.

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