The Reflected Life

You’ve heard about bones of contention, but today, I want to talk about the weeds of frustration.  Today, I made the mistake of taking my inner somethingness out into the garden with me.  I’m not really sure what it was, so I’ll leave it at that.  Perhaps it was the weather, changeable and gusty with high sailing thunderheads threatening rain.  Or maybe it was the sleep I haven’t been getting lately in the name of working on Mom’s morning-energy schedule finally catching up with me.  Could it be money worries or a frustration with my progress of work, both creatively and practically speaking?  Was it some combination of any or all of these factors?  It could have been.

All I know is that, no sooner had I knelt on my foam pad and begun to work at a new weeding project, I felt myself oozing with negativity.  Weeds were twined with pine straw or rooted cheek by jowl with fans of iris leaves, which I damaged just trying to get at the main weed root clusters.  Then, weed plant stems kept breaking off at ground level, leaving those roots in the earth to send up brand new shoots as soon as it rains, which is likely to be this afternoon.  What was the reason for this snarling and oppressive sense of frustration I can still feel the echoes of even now?  Why did I suddenly feel as if I were getting nowhere, and how did it translate so neatly to my actual work in the garden?

So, what I’m describing is probably the most negative emotional space in my go-to spectrum.  There are always those I rarely visit or experience, and we aren’t talking about those (depression, rage, etc).  I’m talking about the most common emotional states I experience in my everyday life.  Most of my experiences tend to be positive or at least skewed toward the positive end of that spectrum.  Frustration–that bogged down sense of helpless and motionless un-progress is a major negative, and perhaps the only actual time when I can identify with black holes.  Becoming a walking peat bog of sneering, crass, dismissive negativity is pretty low on my list of how I want to spend any portion of any time here.  Now that we’ve established the extreme and undesirable nature of this feeling–it’s bad and unproductive, and feeds on itself, even while it seeks to spread, spoiling the pleasure of anyone who is not also experiencing the soul-sucking morass of snarling gloom and fruitless struggle.

Shouldn’t I be seeking to put as much distance as possible between myself and this total suckage?  One would think so, but I have to point out that what I’d rather do is try to understand the root of this sudden swing towards a stinking soul bog.  I think there’s value in trying to see where exactly it comes from.  That’s because, as I was disentangling myself from the dark, fetid feelings-mud, I remembered that I’ve always believed that the physical world is a reflection of our emotional or psychological world, and my 20-minute fruitless attempt to weed was probably a perfect example of this philosophy.  (I forget stuff I know in the stinky marsh of Contrary.)  So, what can I draw from this particular experience?  How is today in the garden like where I am in my life at present?

This would be my jumping-off point for a serious dialogue with my Self, so I’m going to do that.  Perhaps there will be a second part to this entry.

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