Living in Society

Cold Saturday

Blue Bells.

I planted peas yesterday. It seems late getting them in, yet like everything in gardening, we sow our seeds and hope for the best. There is nothing like a bowl of sugar snap peas in the refrigerator for snacking.

Cooler ambient temperatures have made it difficult to get in the garden. Meanwhile, seedlings started indoors have used up almost every available space. We need a few days in a row of better weather to get at least the cruciferous vegetables in the ground. Fingers crossed we’ll get that this week.

I finished reading William Styron’s memoir about depression, Darkness Visible: A Memoir of Madness. It made me think about whether or not I have been depressed. My tendency is to say no, yet after reading Styron, I’m not sure. I certainly haven’t had debilitating depression like he did. When I heard him read from The Long March at university, he had no appearance of being depressed. He recovered from his depression and wrote the memoir. The fame of it eclipsed that of his previous books. Despite depression, Styron achieved a level of success few writers have.

Depression has not played any significant role in my life.

Darkness Visible raises the question of suicide. Styron lists many successful, creative people who took their own lives. He considered suicide himself. I’ve considered what suicide is, yet have not been tempted to take that step in my creative endeavors. I accept that I’m alive, and thanks to my parents I felt valued as a child. That carried me through difficult times in my life. I’m more worried about unintentionally killing myself by things such as falling off the roof during my twice annual inspections, flipping the John Deere tractor while mowing the ditch, or by falling down the stairs because there is no handrail. These situations need resolution soon.

The best news is I continue to crave sugar snap peas grown in our garden. Growing them keeps me engaged with life and chases the blues away. I can’t wait to get back out in the garden… So I can chill a bowl of peas in the refrigerator.