Working In The FRONT Yard!

For as far back as I can remember, I have always hated doing yard work in the front yard.  Even when I lived with my parents on a quiet side street with friendly neighbors, I always felt like I had to be on-the-lookout for someone who might “see me” as I worked “out in the open” like that.  I felt completely exposed.  Like I had to be “on” the whole time, in case a classmate who had made fun of my weight in school walked by and saw me in some new unflattering position (like bending over to pick up leaves or to weed a flowerbed) or in case an adult neighbor wanted to converse with me, which always made me feel self-conscious and stupid.  At that time I was completely at the mercy of my feelings, and my feelings were completely at the mercy of others.

Not surprisingly, when my husband and I moved into our first house, complete with our own front yard to take care of, I brought my neurosis with me.  In both houses we have owned, the rule was that I did the backyard gardening and he did the front.  And that was set in stone.  I wouldn’t lift a finger in the front yard, again, for fear of being seen.  At my current house this became more of an issue because the front yard is very large (so my husband could really use the help) but it is also on a busy road (which means – GASP! – people!!)  During the fall, especially, I eventually had to help rake leaves in the front yard, but that had to be on my terms – early morning weekends ONLY – (I am talking about BEFORE 7 a.m. here!)

All that started to shift last year.  I don’t know when it happened, exactly, but several times I found myself picking-up stray sticks or raking up a little patch of leaves in the front yard WITHOUT having to analyse all the reasons why I couldn’t be the one to do it.  Last spring I filled flower boxes in the middle of the day, in the middle of the week, in the middle of the FRONT YARD!  This past fall, I even raked leaves “in broad daylight!”  But the biggest change happened just a few short weeks ago.

For some reason I got it in my head that I wanted to rake out the beds, take apart the existing rock border, and re-stack it in a neater design.  I looked at my schedule and penciled-myself-in for the following day.  I got out there around 10 a.m. and worked until around 4 p.m. (stopping only for lunch and a couple small snacks and drinks).  I was so involved with what I was doing that I didn’t even realize that I had spent an entire day, in the COMPLETELY unflattering position of sitting cross-legged on the ground, in SHORTS, working in the FRONT YARD!!!, and IT NEVER EVEN CROSSED MY MIND that there may be passers-by who were making fun of me or thinking negative things about my body, or making fun of what I was doing or how I was doing it – – all the crap that had consumed my thoughts for my entire life!!

This was a TRUE MIRACLE for me!!

Thank you, HP, for freeing me from all that horrible, draining, unproductive insanity!!

June 13, 2012 This post was written by Categories: On-Going Victories Tagged with:
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