A 48-hour migraine this past weekend literally took my breath away, leaving me exhausted physically and mentally when it finally subsided early Monday morning. It was all my own fault as I ate some orange in fruit salad two days in a row at the end of last week, and apart from our seasonal hot/humid/cloudy weather patterns which cause most of my pain issues, oranges are the worst of all my migraine triggers. Silly me. I love oranges, but from childhood they have not liked me, and there is always a price to pay.
I thought I'd just indulge the once when adding half an orange to our Thursday morning fruit salad breakfast, but tempted by my tastebuds and ignoring the twitch which had developed in my right eye, Friday mornings fruity bowl also contained a half orange. I knew my head would take me on a path I'd rather not follow, but was fairly sure it would only last 8-10 hours...but this time it reached new heights. So much so that I have no more desire to ever eat an orange. Only took me five decades.
Just before the sun set on Sunday evening I walked around the garden with my camera to capture some beauty, some aspects of gratitude, some miracles that had almost perished over our very long summer, and others which began as tiny seeds. Away from the glare of sunlight which was too much for my head and eyes even as the migraine began to wind down, I was able to appreciate those small pops of colour, the lush green of new life - and to see the results of my husband's diligent work to bring abundance to what was once a rather barren quarter acre.
Lately my sweet man has been spending extra hours after work building raised garden beds from discarded wooden palettes a local firm were happy for him to take away. So far the completed beds are growing burgundy beans, cucumbers, zucchini and chocolate capsicum, with two more ready to be filled with new seedlings later in the week.
He also surprised me with this flower and herb planter which leans against the fence beside the vibrant pink bougainvillea. I was so happy because this is something I've wanted for a very long time...
It's now filled with zinnias and verbena and scattered rocket, coriander, lettuce and chamomile seeds between. So far things are thriving and I pray everything continues to flourish now that the late autumn heat has cooled to an average of 29 C (85 F) every day.
I have planted a lot of coriander around the garden because along with parsley, chives and basil it is our most used herb. Finally the seeds have sprouted and soon we'll not have to buy it at the grocers.
One of spots where baby rocket has made an appearance...
...and a new lot of basil sprouted from last year's seeds will soon be planted out into the garden beds.
In the front yard we have five large Kent pumpkins on the self seeded vine with more appearing every few days. You know, it's been my dream to grow pumpkins for around 30 years now...and finally that dream has come true. It was joy to hand pollinate (thank you to those ladies who shared this technique) because even though we have a lot of bees in the morning primrose bush nearby I wanted to be sure of reaping my first pumpkin harvest.
Finding beauty amidst the pain truly nourished my soul, and as the last of this pain drifted away on Monday morning it was to reading the Bible that my thoughts returned, most especially to the psalms which I sat quietly and read for a long while after my beloved went to work.
"I bless the LORD who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me.
I have set the LORD always before me;
because He is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
my flesh also dwells secure."
I'm sure there will be more times in the future when my own actions will again result in consequences I'd rather not experience, but perhaps not as often? I pray for the Holy Spirit to keep teaching me, to keep refining my character, to nudge me harder when I lean away from what I know is right.
About an hour before I began to write this post my right eye began to twitch again and I can feel a new tightening behind both eyes, a sure sign the migraine is not really gone but was just slumbering for a while...so I'm going to take a break from the blog for the rest of the week and let my body rest and restore with simple meals, lots of water and chamomile tea. It really has been an extra long summer...September to May...and I'm not so young anymore. Recoveries take a little bit longer these days and that's a good thing I imagine. For in the quiet restorative seasons the still small voice of God is just a tad more distinct.