Do you have a safe place you retreat to when you need to protect and guard yourself from harm?

My safe place is my garden. At times people have given me a confused look as if to say what good is a garden when you’re depressed and suicidal?

My answer is often about distraction and keeping busy and waiting out the pain but the deeper truth is my garden is quite simply a place where I don’t have to judge or hate myself.

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Banksia sessilis in flower. Usually spiky and irritating but in flower I see the good.

Sometimes depression makes us angry at hurtful towards ourselves. It doesn’t help when people can’t understand and make comments such as why have you become so selfish? Courtesy and politeness cost nothing. Or you have it easy look at what the rest of the world struggles with. For me at least that just becomes evidence used within me to keep building the case against myself… “Why I am not a worthwhile human being”.

Utter bullshit we learn eventually… provided we are given support to survive and time and knowledge to learn to recognise what is happening within.

My garden doesn’t say anything. I can be a mess. I can swear or cry or just sit and stare and it makes no difference to my plants. They are still beautiful regardless.

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Arctosis “Hannah”. My favourite.

Some days I can work until I’m exhausted and can sleep. Other days I just walk through the 5 acres and look at plants with a cup of tea in hand.

My garden is a protective space.

It gives me simple enjoyment of fresh air and sunshine.

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Euphorbia milii yellow form being gorgeous

A purpose and goal I can achieve or try again tomorrow or next week without pressure or guilt.

Adventure and anticipation hunting for wildflowers.

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Acacia cyclops ready to flower. Anticipation

Peace and quiet.

Something to connect with others about which doesn’t have to involve mental illness.

Projects and interests and passions.

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Hovea trisperma (low growing common hovea) has come out in flower at the block).

When depressed, I lose hope of ever feeling these things. But in my garden I can sometimes find those emotions. It reminds me those feelings are not lost just buried at the moment.

Being in my garden reminds me to turn off the phone and just exist for a moment. Just be in my safe place and let all the expectations of the world fall away.

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Native wisteria (Hardenbergia sp) has come back after being eaten by roos.

I will return in time. I’ve missed all of your gardens in the Sixes on Saturday most of all.

For now I’m in my garden letting it protect me until I feel a little better inside.

Happy Saturday fellow gardenistas.

 

 

 

21 thoughts on “Using gardens as armour from the world.

  1. Stay connected. Let writing about your garden and exploring the garden blogs of others be a comfort to you. I find such solace in my garden and in the process of gardening – but have not been able to articulate it as you have done so well.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m sad that you can relate to how I feel but also glad that your garden helps you too. If you ever need to talk I’m happy to listen ok.

      Like

  2. My safe place is under my headphones with music. I hope you continue to have a peaceful feelings in your beautiful garden. I love seeing your pictures because some of the plants I have never seen before. I guess the roos are like the deer here in America, always sneaking in an eating the plants. Take care!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Beautiful post with amazing pictures! I am looking forward to reading more of your post as I find you pretty amazing. I hope if you have the time you will check out my site. Through keeping things very real and full of truth, I always aim to encourage and inspire others through my words!

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  4. Hello Nat. I just read your post. I like that you are reaching out to find a protective space to shield you from depression. I believe it is a strong move. However, if I may ask, do you believe in God? God is a strong protective force and an ever present help in times of need. God wants us to be truly happy and he is always ever ready to instill happiness in us. If you can keep an open mind, here is something you can try: Find a quiet space free from distractions, imagine that Jesus is in front of you, talk to him the way you will with a close friend, tell him how you feel. Beware of sudden distractions when you pray, this is a trick the devil uses to stop us from having focused prayers. You might also get the feeling that God is not there or that you are simply wasting your time, this is another trick that the devil uses to discourage us from prayers. Be focused and tell the lord how you feel. Jesus is there with you and he cares for you, so invite him into your life and ask him to pour out his blessings. When you get the answers to your prayers, do not forget to thank God. Also try to maintain a relationship with him, keep telling him how you feel, keep thanking him and finding out about him. This way he can remain in your life and continue to work his miracles.

    Whatever the situation is that you are going through, you need to know that you are very important to God. You are so important to him that he gave up the life of his son Jesus, so that you can have a chance at salvation. Reach out to him and let him fill you up. Good luck and God bless.

    Liked by 2 people

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