To the garden I go. Between shifts at the hospital, finally getting the fresh air I so desperately crave and relaxation I so desperately need. This little garden I love so much, that made the stress of moving couple of years ago so worth it. That I never dreamed I’d have when I grew up in the big city. That this would be where I got to spend my time. One day who knows, maybe a Little One may even be playing here.
To the garden I go, for peace and relaxation, methodically pulling weeds, turning compost, and checking on my harvest. Talking to you Little One as I feel you kick, telling you what I see and what excitement awaits you. Feel my heart beat and breathing relaxed as I tend to the garden. I tell you of the pond I will dig for you so you can meet some frogs when you’re bigger, tell you about the insect hotel I build for you and how this little garden of ours is where I can relax in what I found a very emotional first pregnancy.
Labour begins and I read I should be busy to help it along. Wellies on and to the garden I go. Nesting means I have already cleaned and done every job I can so I plant seeds to tell you about growing when you are here Little One. The contractions get less after about 2 hours of excitingly recording them, I find out it has been a fake labour, crying, shattered and emotional the soil and seeds get thrown in the compost bin as I can’t bear to look at them.
You are 2 weeks over due Little One and I cant think of anything else to do to get you to come. Chillies from the garden have been eaten to hurry you along, raspberry leaves infused and drank to encourage you. I beg and plead for you not to stay too long in my belly, that it’s not as cold as you think in my little garden in Scotland, and I’ll keep you cozy when you come. But to the garden I go, to keep my mind occupied until we can introduce ourselves properly.
You are here after a week in hospital and emergency theatre. We did not plan it this way did we Little One. We planned the “natural birth” didn’t we. Essential oils were taken, aromatherapy planned and the birthing pool booked. Maybe a bit of gas and air at most we thought. Things were not as we pictured. I thought I would be disappointed little one that the birth was not as planned but look at you, you are here, we are both now safe, we have both been a little poorly and now need to heal together at 8 days old I leave the house for the first time….and to the garden we go.
Weeks pass by, and weeds get taller, but we get stronger don’t we Little One and so to the garden we go. Wrapped up in hats and jumpers, I show you the busy bumblebees at work, I show you the berries growing, we pull a few weeds but that is all we can manage today. We sit in the garden and I feed you as we relax together in my garden with the chair your Daddy moved in for us to take things at a more relaxed pace. I feel a glimmer of myself returning again and sit released listening to the birds with you.
We have been to the sling library and now things are easier, I have the use of both my hands now don’t I Little One, so to the garden we go. We harvest berries and leeks, we freeze the leeks and I munch the berries, we make some infused water, and use some rosemary to make some cleaning potions. Finally starting to get the hang of this as you are snuggles cosy close to my body in your sling, dosing off as I get through these weeds.
You are six months old now Little One and whilst you love your breast feeding you are loving exploring new flavours aren’t you. I let you grab at an apple on the tree and that the one we cut up for you to munch those teething gums on, we turn the rest into puree for you to gulp down. Back out to the garden we go and its butternut squash next followed but sweet potato and parsnip. We explore our bug hotel, we check for toads but none have come to visit yet. A squeal is let out she a robin comes to its nest and I get my first glimpse of you taking it all in.
Back to work at the hospital it is for me soon Little One and oh how I will miss you. The tears I have already shed thinking about it. I can’t bear to leave you Little One and as the Grannies discuss childcare arrangements and how it is often harder for the mum than it is for you, we depart, and to the garden we go . To have a little cry and cuddle, in our sanctuary. I pretend to weed but we cuddle for an hour and I sing to you through the tears.
I picture you in your red wells Little One, pottering off to the garden, learning where your food comes from, growing food from seeds, picking berries, carving pumpkins, making friends with the wildlife, and learning as you play. I hope you love it as I do, I hope it keeps you calm and happy and I hope your memories of your Mummy involve this loyal garden. Most of all, I hope one day you take my hand and say with an excited glimmer in your eye….”Mummy, to the garden we go”.
Helen is a first time mum with her little one Jack teaching her the ropes for the last 9 months. Living in Ae Forest, Dumfries and Galloway, loving exploring living in the country, painting, and making the most of having her first ever garden. https://www.instagram.com/helen_bogle