A shift in perspective

Appreciating the beauty in nature one rainy Saturday.

Credit: Barb Rayment

Moping around the house on yet another cool rainy Saturday, I was feeling sorry for myself and wasting time on the computer, and came across a video of a young Japanese mother talking, through a translator, about post-quake life in her part of Japan.

Smiling and jiggling a laughing baby on her knee, she explained that she had been eight months pregnant at the time of the quake. Her baby had been born healthy, and although she is sad that he will never be able to go outside and play because of the radioactivity, she is doing her best to make sure that he has a happy childhood.

Can you imagine NEVER being able to play outside? No rolling in the grass, or lying on your back watching the clouds. No daisy chains, no bug collecting, no barefoot puddling in the shallow water at the beach. No connection with nature and the natural world – how will that affect this generation of Japanese children? What will their relationship with the earth be like?

I can’t imagine. In my garden, my relationship with nature tends towards an ongoing war against the dandelions and hawkweed, as well as a few thugs I planted myself (which will be the subject of an upcoming column in the Winter 2011 issue of GardenWise).

Despite the war with the weeds, there is still a great deal of beauty here, and I can wander the paths while the dogs charge in and out of the shrubbery, and admire how some varieties are doing incredibly well this year, even though others are stalled out waiting for the sunshine. And here and there, the real future of my garden – volunteer seedlings of white spruce, lodgepole pine and Douglas fir.

This garden will go back to bush eventually, which is Mother Nature’s plan, and not such a bad one. It’s comforting, in a melancholy way, to know that nature will heal all wounds, including that one that I call a garden and consider to be an “improvement.”

…the sun comes out, and this lovely little Japanese peony is glowing in the sunshine. Right now, life is good.