Saturday, February 12, 2011

Winter Blues and Dirt

When winter begins I experience a mix of emotions- excitement for a new season-trepidation because I do not always do well with it-anticipation for the beauty of new snow and ice- and curiosity at what the snow reveals in the way of footprints. (I like to find the coyote trails, and see where they come onto our property)

Winter has a little over a month left and I have taken a swan dive into the winter blues. Fatigue is my constant companion, creatively I am congested, sicknesses have taken their toll on my immune system, lack of sunlight makes me want to crawl under the covers and hide. I want to spend the day in pajamas and am completely unmotivated to do anything. 

Aside from sunlight I am missing dirt. I miss the feeling of warm dirt crumbling in my hands, the deep earthy smell as I turn dirt over, the excitement of watching things grow out of the dirt.  Never did I imagine that I would experience such a deep connection to dirt, and during the growing season be concerned about the health of my dirt- to the point of nearly daily conversation with my husband who is not in love with dirt. 

I came across a news article that discusses some studies concerning dirt, in particular a bacteria in dirt, that alleviates depression.  Reading it made me wonder if the profusion of depression in modern life isn't in some way related to the lack of connection to dirt in daily life...and the push for everything to be sanitary. 

Next week we are supposed to have a few days of warm weather, possibly in the 50's.  Hopefully the ground will thaw out enough to do some digging.
Today the chickens found a soft patch of dirt in the potting shed and all squished into the small space to take dirt baths. If chickens can be happy, they were.


  1. I'm looking forward to the thaw, though I do love winter. Even a winter-lover has her limits! I'm glad to see you back!! Where does the name Eleni come from?

  2. Guess I'm going to dig in the dirt next week!

  3. Very little Italian grandmother used to always tell me that "you should eat a little dirt each week". I think she was onto something!


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