Surlingham, Norfolk

January Blues

For anyone who knows me I have two massive passions in life – Gardening (obviously) and Hockey. A combination of both keeps me balanced and grounded.

Unfortunately, back in September last year I was playing a national league hockey game, where I sustained a horrific injury. A couple of broken bones and 3 hours of shoulder surgery later – I was on a long road to recovery.

With several weeks of rest and a well-deserved pity party under my belt, I expected to just get better quickly. I began forcing stretches which meant my stitches opened up. I was frustrated as I wasn’t able to drive and became dependable on others. With so much discomfort, pain and anger I struggled sleeping.

With the cold winter months, short days and grey skies I quickly spiralled into a bad space.   I was tired, I wanted to stay at home and couldn’t be bothered to do anything. I mean I didn’t even want to potter in the garden! It was a very obvious sign I wasn’t quite myself. I guess, if I am honest – I lost my way a little.

I’ve never known life without playing hockey or gardening…. both activities were to physically demanding to contemplate, plus I had zero motivation.

After many medical appointments and lots of tears shed – The penny dropped during one of my ‘rehabilitation’ appointments at Replay Sports Clinic. Lorna (who has now become a friend for life) explained the recovery process in ‘Lucy’s Language’ she said

Just like a plant the human body requires nurturing, love and optimal conditioning to grow healthy and strong. The optimal conditions need to remain consistent over long periods for continued growth, sometimes growth will not be evident, flowers might not grow but it doesn’t mean the plant has died – only that in that moment it requires a little more time and a little more care. Patience and commitment to the process will keep things moving and at some point, you will see progression again. Every plant, in every environment has its own time scale… it can’t be pushed, it can’t be rushed… you just need to keep caring for it and the outcome will take care of itself

This really hit home…. It was the first time someone stopped using fancy medical terms and long words.  I just needed to stop putting pressure on myself and try and fill my life with positivity.

I needed to spend time with likeminded people, eat well and do the things I love. I knew I couldn’t play hockey, but I could look to my garden again for help!

Gardening isn’t always about the physical activities, like digging up weeds or cutting the grass….it is about being mindful of its journey throughout the seasons.

Pre-injury I fell into the trap – Life got busy and what time I had in my own garden was valuable…. I always focused on a specific task or project I had to do. I took for granted that I needed my garden for time to relax and reflect, for my own wellbeing.

I needed to start ‘Taking notice’ on how a garden doesn’t just thrive in the summer, it also survives though the winter. Ironically the exact journey I am on myself. I guess what I am trying to say is – don’t take your garden or the things in it for granted.

Although you can’t do much in January there are other things you can do and take notice of;

  • Walking out on the crispy grass carpet and breath in the fresh air.
  • Befriend your birds. Watch them visit your garden and listen out for their song.
  • Take note of how beautiful the frost is, glistening on the bare branches or evergreen leaves.
  • Remove the ice from birdbaths /ponds and feed the wildlife.
  • Organise pots in preparation for this year’s seedlings.
  • Plan and plant what seeds you want to grow this year!

I know I am certainly going to be taking more notice in the garden and focus less on the Jobs. I am now going to dust off my wellies, wrap up warm and head to my greenhouse!

Remember – we are all allowed to feel the way we feel.

It’s OK not to be OK all of the time.…with social media today, people are great at posting and filtering their ‘best bits’ (I have been a culprit of it) that doesn’t mean everything is perfect in their life. Everyone struggles sometimes… so let’s help each other by being kind, mindful and never judging.

If like me, you find yourself struggling a little now and then, why not head outside for some fresh air (even if it is just for a 5 minuets). Take notice of all the things in your garden….You never know – You may see things, you’ve never noticed before.

It’s helped me – so I hope it helps you.

Love Lucy xxx