Returning after Lengthy Time

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Hi everyone,

Posting this mostly to get back in the habit of perusing BN on a regular basis and for any encouraging words of wisdom from old-timers :)

Long story short, I've been involved in bonsai (development stage) for ~ five years total, hundreds (thousands?) of hours spent learning, mostly horticulture aspect). Up until about two years ago, I had ~300 plants, almost all <2-4 years old that I'd grown myself from seed. Various species from around the world or Texas natives, some "good for bonsai" and many not -- while I lacked finished trees anything near what people here post, I had a lot of cool ones that I was proud of. Cue a freak medical issue where I lost total function in my right hand, just as the pandemic started, couldn't even wiggle fingers for 3 months. Was going through a divorce then as well and physically couldn't keep them watered that summer.

I've still got ALL my supplies (containers, raw components for my soil mixes, indoor lighting, two small/medium greenhouses outside, benches, mini-fridge DIY seed bank, etc.). I remember "what" to do, but have mental problems staying focused, organizing stuff, etc.

Other than presumably basic advice to "start slow" and maybe not try to go full-tilt boogie in my first season back, any tips on how to get back into the swing of them and clear mental hurdles? When I think about all that I lost, I get down on myself and wonder if I should even bother if I plan to move elsewhere within a couple years.

Thank you.
 

Taste

Mame
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Life is loss and loss is life. So cut your loss and get on with life.

Welcome back. You’re going to do great and we’re glad to have you here! What’s going to be your first tree on return?
 

Deep Sea Diver

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Thanks for sharing. So sorry to hear about your situation. It must have been terribly distressing.

My advice is If you want to, you ought to. I can tell you personally that doing bonsai has been a key to my recovery these past four years after multiple injuries/surgeries suffered from an auto accident, chest, eye, tooth, hand and a death in the family. Clear thinking wasn’t always the case for me either… at least for quite awhile.

This time you can perhaps dust off your talents while keeping your selection tight and focused so a future move will be easier to do.

Best
DSD sends
 

ShadyStump

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I'm what is sometimes called a productive cynic: always assume the worst, and you'll always be pleasantly surprised.
In your case I think it sounds like this: you already lost EVERYTHING once, so what's a couple trees now? No point in NOT giving it another go. Hell, now you're as bent and broken as the trees we imitate. We should stick you in a pot! 😜 I bet you got some gnarly deadwood going on too.

I'm newly single myself. It's been rough. I even go to recovery meetings nowadays.
Everything I had to leave at my ex's place when we separated died, and I no longer have access to some really cool trees that were on that property.
Yet I still have a collection now 5 times at least what I had before, and I've spent maybe $100 on it in the last 6 months, which is about what I was allowed to spend on it in the previous year or two, and that includes gas for collecting trips.
I guess the point is life is shitty; make fertilizer, and see what grows. Worst case, it'll be wacky looking tree to put in a pot.
 

Wires_Guy_wires

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but have mental problems staying focused, organizing stuff, etc.
Part and parcell in my brain. It's extra hard if you have ever experienced something else I think, but speaking from the point where I've lived with it for as long as I can remember, bonsai turned out to be one of those hobbies where you can just go do something else halfway of wiring a tree.

All I can say is: don't go hard on yourself, follow the dopamine, and it'll work out eventually.
Welcome back!
 

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