I am terrible at keeping on top of the weeding in my gardens. I weed maybe twice during the gardening season. I mulch with wood chips and/or straw to keep the weeds down. I cover them up, bury them, ignore them and then finally I have to yank them from their roots and throw them in the compost pile. For if I was to leave them indefinitely in my garden, they would suck all the nutrients from the plants I want nourished. They would take over and make those wanted plants suffer.
This morning, I was able to strongly connect weeding my garden and weeding my life. My life, like my garden, also has to be weeded of what is sucking my energy but not nourishing me. As I was going through my facebook page "hiding" status updates of people who are not a part of my life, have never been much, or never will be, I thought of it as weeding. It's nothing personal against these people, but I am distracting myself by reading posts that aren't relevant to me in any way,and also are not a productive way to spend my time!
I, like alot of people (especially Midwesterners), am a people pleaser. Of course I want to say yes to every favor asked of me. Of course I want to listen compassionately to problems that are plaguing someone, whether they are a stranger or family, and often times I do. I only need to learn to draw the line when it becomes unhealthy for me. I cannot be of much help to someone if I am being depleted. It's easier and healthier in the grand scheme if I deal with the priorities first before allowing myself distraction or escape from reality. There is a fine balance between taking care of ourselves and being selfless.
As I gear up to work more hours and go back to school part time, I am weeding out people and habits that don't nourish me. Work and school take alot of energy, in addition to raising a family and keeping up on the domestic end of things. I find as I get older that I cannot be so open to all the energies around me. I need to be choosy about how distracted I allow myself to get.
With children, a husband, staying healthy, family, school,work, domestic life, me time, and friends, that's alot of lovely, wonderful, busy things on one plate. I am finding that there is not room on the plate for being taken advantage of, for being proud, for pointing out others faults or misfortunes, for gossip, for competition, for closed mindedness and definitely not for people who will not step back and look into a mirror. Of course it's easier for us to point the finger. Even as I type, I can think of things listed in this paragraph that I don't have room on my plate for that I have partaken in. I have gossiped. I have allowed myself to be taken advantage of to avoid confrontation...doing nobody any favors by allowing it. None of us are perfect, but we need only to acknowledge that and keep persevering to change the things that do not serve us.
I am learning the balance. I can still be a reflection without taking the heat. Others can be a reflection for me and I ultimately appreciate it, painful as it sometimes is. So much of my growing has been through reflection. Usually it's hard, but makes me better for it. Sometimes friendships end. Sometimes they grow stronger. Sometimes they are just smooth and easy all the time. Sometimes they're not. What's that saying..."friends come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime"?
Weeding my life (and my garden) is hard to do, but it feels good to take care of ourselves (and gardens), to weed out some of what is not working in our favor and let the other parts of us have room to flourish.