Last week, accumulating snow, ice & frigid temps. This week we hit 60*. I don't know what to make of it either and neither does my poor garden! But I won't go there, yet again.
This past Wednesday morning, I went for a MRI of my 'inner auditory canals' and 'brain' in order to determine if I still have an inner ear infection or if perhaps my arthritis is affecting my ear drum/the nerve and to rule out "anything bad" that could be causing the vibrating hum in my right ear that started on Christmas Eve when the infection kicked in. He doesn't believe anything bad will show up, but "just to rule it out." I will not even let myself consider what those "bad possibilities are!
Now, I'm no stranger to MRIs, I've had many in the last 8 years, but only once before have I had to go head first into one and even though I only do "open" MRIs, it's not the most pleasant experience. Add having my neck & head in a brace with a hockey mask like cage over my face, ear plugs in my ears and not being able to turn my head to either side so I could see out of the machine (like I was able to do during that only other time I've gone in head first) and it was everything I could do not to panic!
I tried just concentrating on breathing. In and out. In and out. But my shoulders were in an awkwardly strait position and at times I felt as though I couldn't breathe correctly so I started to panic.
Then I started counting but would lose track because of the noise from the MRI machine (which was Loud even with the ear plugs in) and that just frustrated me.
Then I started saying Hail Mary's which often helps to calm me when I'm stressed, but again the noise was distracting and I kept losing my place which frustrated me even more.
And of course I began to itch. In places all over my face I couldn't scratch because I had to keep still. Ack!
I wished I could read my book, which was sitting with my husband in the waiting room. I needed to have it finished for bookclub Thursday evening and I still had 100 pages to go! Reading would distract me from all of this...
Then I thought of my garden. My garden!
Immediately I began to relax and my breathing felt less labored.
Images popped into my mind: My 'Mardi Gras' floribunda Rose set against Tangerine Superbells, raindrops on the Bleeding Heart foliage, the Clematis ('Daniel Deronda') after its' petals fell off, Mardi Gras with purple Savlia and the Knockouts after a sunshower, the bright pink of my Azalea’s in bloom... (Pictured in slideshow below). The pungent conglomeration of scents from blooms & foliage on a humid Summer day when I first walk out onto the front porch or out the back door rolled through my mind too.
Then it was time to stop for a bit while they tried to find a good vein in my right arm for the contrast injection. That didn't go well so after a few attempts they bandaged me up and tried the left arm. Thankfully the vein they tried cooperated, the MRI resumed. And with that, I went for a garden walk. Before I knew it, I was finished and free to go! It had still been a long and uncomfortable hour, but once again, my garden was there for me when I need its' comfort.
In sickness and in health, my garden is there for me when I need it and I am there for my garden when it needs me.
PS: Be sure to check the 2012 USDA Plant Hardiness Zone map! I know several people, including myself, who've had a Zone change. To view the new map, click here.
NJ Zones 7a & 6b
New Jersey Through My Eyes