Why is it that when I put my hands in the dirt I feel better?

What is it about mud and worms and soil under my nails that grounds me?

Why do I love weeding by hand - pulling out unruly dandelions and clover - to create what feels like a bit of order in a dis-ordered world?

What is it about perennial flowers bursting from the ground through no effort of mine that sends my soul a'soaring?

Why is transplanting a tall, pink, spiky liatris to the back of the garden where she belongs so rewarding?

What is it about tiny, purple, grape hyacinths that causes me to grin like a kid?

Why can't I wait to go play in the dirt this afternoon?

Might it be that dirt -- humus in the Latin -- reminds me of my station in life?

Might it be that the word humus and the word humble share the same root and therefore putting my hands in the dirt reminds me I can drop any pretense of being in control of life, or strong enough to carry all the burdens, and rest in the humble knowledge that I am merely a creature?

A creature dearly beloved by her Creator, the one who made dirt and worms liatris and hyacinths and showy perennials, and even weeds.

Yes, I think the answer to those questions is YES.

If you can't reach me this afternoon, I'll be elbow deep in my gardens.