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Plant Your Own Garden In 2017



The apartment door shuts and love is gone. The person you loved. The person you did life with. The person you shared an apartment with. The person you went to the farmer’s markets with. The person you went to the dog park with. The person you saw the Grand Canyon and Monument Valley with. The person you shared your dreams with. The person you fell asleep next to, and woke up next to, every single day.

When love walked out that door, regardless if it was your choice or theirs, a piece of you went with them. Love left, and there you are, alone in the apartment you used to share. Perhaps it wasn’t a breakup you experienced. Maybe you didn’t land your dream job like you had hoped, or are at a critical point in your life where significant change is coming. When those uncomfortable and challenging moments present themselves, what do you do? You plant your own garden.

We’ve all experienced heartache and hard times, because this is life. When emotions are running so high, as they often do in stressful situations, it’s hard to know what to do, and what not to do. When my ex left, there were memories of him in every corner, in every room. I knew that life was going to change and I was left with a choice to make. I could have resisted, and decided to move out, leave, run. Or I could rise to the occasion, and face the new life I was about to begin.

Staying in the apartment made sense financially, so I stayed. I stayed and I planted my own garden. What do I mean by that? I started by making the apartment that used to be ours, into mine. I rearranged the furniture in the living room, the bedroom, and transformed the second room into both an office and walk-in closet. The apartment that once brought me pain in familiarity, now felt brighter, lighter, and new. But I didn’t just change the look of my apartment, I also planted my own garden for real.

Prior to the break up, I had been wanting to start growing my own herbs. Being that I have no space outdoors, I wasn’t sure how I was going to make it work in the apartment, but I did. I found the perfect shelving piece to stick planters on from IKEA, and welcomed basil, parsley, and sweet mint into my home. It’s amazing how resourceful and determined you become when you are left standing on your own two feet. It’s beautiful what happens when you embrace change, instead of resisting it. As Jorge Luis Borges said, “plant your own garden and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.”

So when life continues to go left, and then unexpectedly makes a hard right, try to make the best of it. These moments are sure to come, so it’s better to embrace them and see where the universe is taking you. Practice gratitude and self-love. Those things you’ve been putting on the back burner but want to do, go out and do them. Be kind to your neighbor downstairs. Be thankful for the roof over your head and the food on your plate. Make the best of the now and be in the present. Change is uncomfortable, but change is an opportunity.

I hope you plant your own garden in 2017. I hope you take the time to stop on your way home after work to buy yourself flowers. I hope you realize that home is where you decide it is, and it’s always within you. In 2017 I hope you see the silver lining and are brave enough to rise to the occasion. And I really hope you start your own herb garden in your apartment, because it can truly change your life.

Written By Jamie Fleetwood


Jamie is a Midwest transplant currently living in Phoenix, Arizona. She is a writer, creator, and wanderer who enjoys road trips, photography, and getting lost. She encourages others to live life their own way by sharing the nomadic pitstops of her life through photos and words from the heart.

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