Anticipation is a stimulating and frustrating place to be for many of us. When I walk around the garden during spring, I get excited by all the evidence of what is to come in the rest of the year. I see flower buds ready to bloom, baby fruit beginning to grow. Catch a scent off of a blooming tree…
And, then, as the spring progresses and the heat starts to come, I find myself feeling a little concerned about what the quality of the summer will be.
Will it be too hot so the fruit doesn’t grow well?
Will the alternating temperatures wreck havoc with the normal growing rhythm of the plants I have?
Will I be able to process all of the fruit effectively if they all ripen at once again this year?
How do I trust this new rhythm that nature is giving me?
I am reminded that there are times in life where I find it difficult to wait. Do you have anticipatory anxiety? It’s that moment when you are planning for an event or activity and feel an underlying anxiousness that seems unexplained. That niggling worry that is undefined and yet present behind the enthusiasm and busyness.
When I find myself in this state (which happens much less than it used to), I remind myself of my favorite lessons from A Course in Miracles workbook: “I am never upset for the reason I think.” (Wkbk 5) Then, I remember:“I could see peace instead of this.”(Wkbk 34) Following quickly in my mind are:“I am not a body. I am free.” (Wkbk 199) “I am as God created me.” (Wkbk 162) In returning to the present through these new thought patterns, I am able to let go of the fear that tripped me up.
On the other side, is the joy of anticipation. I am currently in a state of continuous joy as I see the new life spreading throughout the garden. When I observe all of the baby fruit, tomatoes, and herbs I begin to imagine the mouth watering meals I will be enjoying soon. Patience arises as I use this time to get my creative juices flowing in anticipation!
In wandering through the garden, I can look closely at the current growing cycle of the plant and release the fears that bubble up through observing more closely what is happening right now. The leaves are beginning to unfold, the tiniest hint of a fruit is revealing itself, the earlier blooming plants have dried up and are turning into compost for the newer plants protecting them from the heat.
Just being in nature helps to reduce the anxiety that is so prevalent in our modern society. Taking deep breaths of the fresh air, the foliage that surrounds you, and the microorganisms in the soil when you get a closer sniff are all present to help us relax and feel at peace. Become a partner with the natural world and you will discover how mutually beneficial it can be!