Adults Need A Reason

I’m trying to grow food in our one bedroom apartment. Nothing fancy, just some small vegetables. I got a head of lettuce up, but only clipped one batch from it before it died. Turns out I cut it too close to the center. There’s also a couple of strawberry plants and a green bean plant. I didn’t know green beans have nice purple flowers.

Why am I blogging about this? Tonight I bought some more starter plants, and was transferring them to new pots and soil. Sitting in our living room, dirt spilled on the floor and all over me, a realization hit me: I know why so many grownups garden.

If I was sitting in the living room just playing with a pile of dirt, and there were no plants or gardening accessories nearby, people would think I was weird. After all, I’ll be 36 in June. What adult in their right mind sits around playing in dirt when there are IMPORTANT THINGS that must be done! It wouldn’t matter if I told people  it lowers my stress level, makes me laugh, and I like it. It’s just not done, you know.

Now add the plants, soil, and pots back in. Suddenly I’m doing SOMETHING IMPORTANT. Even though I’ve killed almost everything I’ve planted so far, I can call myself a gardener and no one will snicker at me or roll their eyes. Now playing in the dirt isn’t playing at all. It’s work. It has a PURPOSE. Having a purpose makes it something grownups do automatically. Folks may think it’s nice that my stress level drops when I do it, but that becomes a “side benefit”.

Why do adults need a “real reason” to do something we like? What is so sinful about having fun these days?