Monday, March 23, 2015

Waking up the gardener to wake up the garden

Well, I’ve taken a long hiatus from blogging. I lost the passion for talking about gardening and taking photos after experiencing a litany of back injuries and tennis elbow. These injuries weren’t caused by the gardening, but by something much more sinister: the job that makes my gardening possible!

I sit behind a computer the majority of the day. Let’s face it, the majority of people do. For me work is on a computer. Blogging, news, photography, all use a computer. Even recreational movies are on a computer. Many of my passions had moved to a technology that only allows for sitting, possibly standing. Sure I can shift locations or positions, but in the end if I wanted to participate in these, I had to be stationary. And in order to write about my passion for gardening, I was right back here again – at my computer, which felt very much like work.

I’ve heard a lot about walking desks. I’m fully impressed by those who have walking desks and are successful. My ability to walk in a straight line, type and not fall is akin to the inability of walking and chewing gum. Yep, I’m one of those people.

My officemate sent out an email with the ominous subject, “sitting=death!” Well, it hasn’t killed me yet, but it has taken a toll. After experiencing muscle strains in my lower back, tennis elbow in my dominant arm, and now bulged disks in my cervical spine I have been concentrating on gentle movements and re-gaining my strength.

Now when I watch a movie or read, I walk on a treadmill. It’s become enough of a habit where one doesn’t feel right without the other. This has built more strength, but it also is helping me strike down the demons of my sedentary work life one mile at a time.

Where I thought my gardening life was doomed, I’ve found that with appropriate attention I have very little difficulty doing the physical labor of gardening that I love. Gone are the days where I can pick up cinder blocks with one hand, but hopefully that is not a necessity anymore. If it does become a necessity, I have a loving husband and mostly cooperative 7-year old boy who can help me.

My work has changed as well. Until just over a year ago, I was one of the soldiers in the trenches – going about my day pushing pixels as a web designer. My immediate supervisor moved out of state, and I was tapped to take his supervisory position and the learning curve and rapid shift to a different way of working has also taken its toll.

As many of us often do, I looked to my garden as a way to reset my brain from the long hours at work, but when it came to sharing things as The Durable Gardener, I had lost that focus. I won’t beat around the bush – I was gardening for me because I needed it and I wasn’t blogging because I didn’t need to spend more time in front of my computer…I needed to eliminate the wires as much as I needed to eliminate the weeds.

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