My mom is a plant lady. As long as I can remember, she has been pinching this and rooting that. Her kitchen window sills are heavy laden with a combination of indoor plants and glass jars filled with plants that she is currently rooting. She’s always on the lookout for a “good” rock to border her flower beds. As a child, I just thought she enjoyed gardening. Little did I know that it was her secret refuge for maintaining her mental health.
Now I am a plant lady. My deck counter holds the little plant babies that I’ve rooted from my mom’s yard. I squeal like a kid in the candy store when I see perennials emerging in the spring. Almost daily, I can be found in my yard-weeding, planting or dividing something.
Being the primary caregiver for a medically complex child often leaves me physically and mentally spent. The best medicine I have found for both my physical and mental health is “digging in the dirt.”
Like most caregivers, I’m tethered to my house. Going to the gym or taking a run around the block is not always feasible. But, I can step outside and get a great workout and fantastic mental boost.
When I garden, I can think my own thoughts, pray, and simply enjoy nature. My yard is also a great place to release frustration in a positive way. For me, it is literally a shot in the arm.
Apparently, my mom and I are onto something. Research has concluded that gardening not only produces happy hormones in your brain but also gives you a great total body workout.
Tilling soil has also shown to be beneficial in battling depression and anxiety, both of which are common among caregivers.
– Debi Blaising, Springible Contributor