All summer my muchness has been expressed mostly in the gardens. For the first time ever I have a greenhouse. Many hours were required to prepare the soil, dig out the weeds, lay layers of cardboard to deter insistent weeds before the greenhouse could even be built. Then came experimenting with temperature and moisture, moving tender plants inside on cool nights then outside to soak up the sunlight or refreshing rain. I expanded my herb gardens adding new plants, moving others to more conducive locations. Nearer the house I made a meditation garden, created a walkway between it and the strawberry beds. I gathered large stones to create curved borders defining the space around the abundance of flowers returning from last year’s planting and the addition of new ones. I created nearly invisible mesh fences to keep horses, cats, rabbits and raccoons out of the delectable herbs and veggies. Took long walks in the cool of the evening or drove further west to stroll along the shoreline of the bay. Met new friends and neighbors at potlucks. Drove the grandkids to play days, shopping, and summer activities. My muchness manifested in frequent sunburns, aching muscles, prolific gardens, joyous exchanges with family and friends.
Now it’s time to redirect my muchness; stir up slumbering embers, add woolen blankets to the bed and a sweater for cooler days. My muchness turns to writing and reading, crafting and cooking, reconnecting by phone and slow mail. I’ll add to my photo collections on the computer. This winter I may even get to those boxes of old photos pushed to the back of the closets, our family history and memories ready to be sorted. Maybe.
Just now the golden light of autumn days stretches across the fields, leaves are falling, horses are growing winter coats. Our busy muchness is ready for rest, turning inward to discover what has been waiting for an invitation to come forth. I’m not sure the Mad Hatter was right. Our muchness may change shape and appearance but given loving cultivation, it will never be lost. Maybe the Mad Hatter himself is the innovator, the inner critic transformed into Guide, assisting muchness to emerge slowly, slowly until its presence is made visible. Until it finds its life in beauty and service.