My legs and arms quivered
as I held a pose in yoga class,
determined to fight the urge to
tumble to my mat and curl
up in child's pose.
It had been four fast months
since I gave up yoga classes for
the summer. Maybe more.
Focusing on a spot on the
floor (a little trick the teachers
share to enhance concentration
and avoid toppling over) the
vision of a local golf course
popped into my mind.
This particular golf course was
sold last winter, the land
destined to become another
For some reason, the new
neighborhood was delayed and
the land sat fallow all summer.
In no time at all, nature began
to reclaim this parcel of
earth as her own.
I don't drive by the old golf
course routinely, so to me, nature
seemed to take over speedily,
but most likely, it was a slow
and steady invasion of acres
that had once been well-groomed
and cared for.
I was feeling a lot like that
overgrown land at this early
morning yoga class. In just a
few short months of neglecting
my yoga practice, I'd lost a lot of
ground--in this case, strength,
balance and flexibility.
I was shocked how quickly
(And how sore I was for several
Remember the tumbling mass of
vines behind the door in the classic
story, The Secret Garden?
Yep, that was me and yoga class
following my summer hiatus.
Habits and care-taking go hand
in hand, whether it's taking care
of a garden, cultivating a
relationship, practicing a sport,
digging deep into a hobby or
flexing our mental muscles.
Otherwise, the creepers move
Depending how long the ground
has lain dormant, it can take a
lot of work to reclaim it.
Sometimes the vines are so
overwhelming that it's easy to
turn away and give up.
Don't give up.
Think of The Secret Garden.
In the story, fingers were pricked
on thorns. Backs and legs were sore.
The mess was astounding and
seemed, at times, impossible
But the characters hung on despite
the odds, despite the pain and
despite the skepticism of the adults
who felt they couldn't bring the
garden back to life.
Of course, they did bring
it back : )
Where have the vines crept into
your life? It might be a hobby you
loved but abandoned due to life's
demands....a friendship that faded
when it wasn't given proper priority....
or, like my mine, a healthy habit that
was put on the back burner.
It's time to get out the shears
and begin to cut those creepers
Pick up the paint brush, the
telephone, the yoga mat or
whatever tool you need to make
your own secret garden bloom,
Because at the end of our life's journey,
we don't want vines covering a host of
for things not done or relationships
not given proper attention.
Let's be patient gardeners of our
own stories, replacing creepers with a
landscape we've created out of
good habits, care, optimism
If you look the right way,
you can see the whole world
is a garden.
~Frances Hodgson Burnett,
The Secret Garden
all images P&H