Gardening and Elections
Diary of an accidental entrepreneur, mama and once upon a time yogini.
I found myself In the garden today. It’s a Thursday and a work day and I am in the garden. It’s also the day after Election Day in the US. If you have followed any news from the States over the last four years you might understand why I am in the garden.
I am not particularly political or patriotic. If truth be told I am not even well versed on Trumps policies or plans. It’s not anxiety that is getting me today either. Although it’s in there. Instead I am in a full throated, tear welling, heartbreaking and inescapably confronted space with the knowledge that as a nation, there is such a strong divide. I am concerned we are so entrenched in the ‘right and the wrong’ of things that we can no longer see the other persons humanity or even feel our own.
There’s a lot of solace I take from living in New Zealand. There’s even more solace I take from LilyBee and doing the best we can to make the world a better place. Both through product, our values, and culture. In a world full of problems that can be suffocating in size and complexity, it’s what we do to make the world a better place. And it feels good.
But today, instead of being contented with my life and waiting patiently/impatiently for the election results I am in the garden awash with overwhelm. This time there is no head shaking and then hand shaking and accepting the results of a close election. No matter the winner the US is a deeply divided nation. That feels like a much bigger problem than who actually holds office. It also makes me feel like we are failing as a society.
With my hands in the dirt I remember a recent chat with a terribly wise friend over cider (it was actually over email but a chat over a cider somehow sounds better),
“The best part of failure is it makes you less judgemental, more compassionate and empathetic. Life can make you cynical but for me the difficult times have made me a kinder person. Possibly it’s my greatest triumph."
I couldn’t agree more. If that’s the only thing I ever accomplish, being a kinder person, it will have been a life worth living. Being kinder, both to ourselves and others, is perhaps the only sensible way forward.
So I finish in the garden feeling more heartened, a little better for the garden being tended, and remember we always have a choice. Life is an endless stream of choices. I am not sure there is a ‘right and a wrong’ of it. But there is conscious and unconscious and what is and is not in alignment with our souls.
I also remind myself that it’s small steps like these that change our world and can be our greatest triumph.