I've been editing and re-posting blog posts from the now-defunct Boozy Gardener to this site. You'll see at least an article a week for the next few months. The Boozy Gardener was a comedic gardening blog I wrote for a few years that offered general life advice and gardening stories, along with tales from my life.
My friend David from Commonwealth Farm also posted uplifting stories that I'll share, but he has his life together, thus will not be discussed in this particular blog.
Why re-post some of the Boozy Gardener articles here? Probably ego, in part. It was a lot of work, and it's sad to think about the posts disappearing into the ether. More important than my ego, though, is that these posts were written during a transitional period in my life. As you'll glean, this three-year period was a time when I started to overcome some lifelong obstacles to lead a much happier life.
It's also funny.
As I've been curating the posts (I'm not re-posting all of them), I noticed a central conflict in the protagonist (me). The Boozy Gardener seemed to constantly struggle with balance. In the "Art of Staying Busy," I talk about how keeping a packed, busy schedule is the key to happiness. In "The Importance of Downtime," I talk about how running myself ragged led to a complete collapse (which was hyperbole; it actually led to a two-day TV binge). What the heck was my point? What was I trying to communicate?
It seems clear from 2020 (get it, 20/20) that I had not yet truly embraced the Middle Path. We discussed this in a previous blog (and in class), but in brief, the Middle Path is the Buddhist principle that nothing should be done in excess. Work/leisure, pleasure/discomfort, wealth/poverty... we should not fall on either extreme but strive to find a middle ground.
Why did I share these posts if I (ultimately) learned the knowledge within was incomplete? I think it's just as important to learn from someone's missteps (or our own) as much as it is from their victories. I could sit in class or write these blogs from the vantage point of, "See? I've got it figured out! Listen to me!!" But, that would a) not be true, and b) be pretty annoying.
I know that I learn best from other flawed people (the Buddha included among them) and believe that by showing my own imperfections and missteps, I'm offering more honest lessons to my class and readers.
So to return to the earlier question: What the heck was (is!) my point? There is truth in those blogs. It is important to stay busy. It is important to schedule that which is most important to you. However, it is also important to check-in with meditation and mindfulness. Yes, you have cleaning on the schedule, but are you getting sick and need a break? Before you say "yes" to a request, how do you really feel about it? Are you in a good physical, mental, and emotional place to help?
I could go on, but then why would you read the other blogs?