Detail from “Lost,”a multi-media work by Marian Methner

During a discussion about growing up, my then four year old grandson Zebedee asked me, “Gran, can a grown-up grow down?” I thought for a moment and said, “Yes, Zeb, sometimes we need to grow down.”

Transplanting a plant that has outgrown its pot comes to mind. This requires untangling and even cutting off some roots. Sometimes giving the plant a vigorous thump and a good shake to loosen old soil is required before placing the plant in new culture – live soil – humus, the root of the word human – where roots can spread out and grow down deep to receive nourishment for new growth.

The loss of the young and carefree part of myself leaves me looking for opportunity to discover meaning, a turning inward, and yet a being outside time. I’ve been asking myself, who was that woman who loved sliding down wet jungle paths in pouring rain and loved teaching college students the basics of psychology and human development; who was the 20, 30 and 40 something woman who began many hospice and other family support and art programs? What shone through her? What lies and truths remain in her bones?

When we fear something, we don’t reach out and risk, but when we don’t reach out, we don’t get burned but we reinforce the fear. At one time, overwhelmed with fears, I thought falling apart would lead to total dissolution and then I fell right into the arms of a group of loving women,  family and friends.


It has been a terrific few weeks; Barb and I playing with Art, planting potatoes with Jerry and witnessing his excitement when the bees arrived for the hive he lovingly prepared in the meadow. Today Barb and I are driving from Richmond to Baltimore to spend the day at the American Visionary Art Museum.

All the people I’ve been with so far enter into lively dialogue in my head. On Thursday I’ll meet a friend in Northern, Virginia to drive to Vermont to meet another friend – Broads on A Mission discussing shared community.

At the end of the month I’ll return to the North West for a few weeks. THEN it’s beginning to look like I’ll be transplanted into a garden community.  Stay tuned…


About Marian Methner, B.S., D.Min.

Polydox: accepting that we are many labels, I am mother of 4, mother in law (love) of 4 and grandmother of 5. My life is a collection of bits and starts. I was recently on the road for over a year exploring ideas of living in shared housing. A recent summer course in Permaculture design, solidifed my interest in "social permaculture" or ways we interact not only with our Earthly environment but also with each other. I am back Bellingham, Washington, in a small rental house, owned by my ex husband, talk about shared housing, practicing living in community with family, and friends. My doctoral dissertation A Map to Living Open Heartedly, centers around making art as a way to healing. Paradoxiclly, a recent diagnoses of heart failure (cardiomyopathy) expands this exploration...
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2 Responses to Transplanting

  1. Falling apart–falling into. Does one lead into the other? Necessary for the other? Interesting to reflect on when there is a relationship between the two. As always, you make me think and feel. Love, Nancy A

  2. I fell apart once and it was very painful. My entire body was on fire as walls cracked and the stuff of ‘me’ came up again. There weren’t any welcoming arms but there was help as I stumbled forward into a wholer self. After experiencing that, I believe in the body-mind connection. Once again I am moving towards break down / break out knowing that it’s time to leave my home, my shell, my nest – not knowing where to go next. I am bloggging to explore as I think you have been and it is very heartening to hear you say you think you have found a new place to be. I hope I will be as fortunate and look forward to learning more about your new adventures. I am staying tuned.

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