Have you ever received a gift that although you thought it was cool and interesting, never thought you’d use it? I received one of those this past Christmas, but boy was I wrong!
By the time my girlfriend Suzanne and I got together to celebrate Christmas 2014, it was all but over. We had both been so busy throughout the holidays that getting together had just not been in the cards. So early January 2015 we finally connected and enjoyed a morning or gift exchanging, conversation, and some final holiday bliss to close the end of the holiday season.
Suzanne had tons of little goodies for me to open. It was like Christmas morning as a child all over again. Every gift was well thought out and definitely something I could use or most certainly wanted. There was one gift however that when I opened it, even though appropriate for my interests, I just wasn’t sure it was something I would take the time to use. The first thought that went through my head was This is neat, but where am I going to keep it? Not, when am I going to use it, because honestly, I didn’t think I would.
This is one of those gadgets that the manufacturers sell millions of, but how often they get used is probably far less than they advertise. Like all those kitchen gadgets sitting on the shelf in my basement, I thought this one was destined for dust collecting somewhere in a corner in the garage. Even Hubby looked at it and admitted it was interesting, but maybe his father would get more use out of.
Well, from day one out in the yard this 2015 Gardening Season, I am happy to say, this little gadget has been affixed to my behind — literally. My father-in-law would have to pry it from my cold dead body before I’d give it up and I will never doubt Suzanne and her ultimate wisdom again.
What the name of this little thing is escapes me, but I refer to it as my “Garden Saver!”
Now I’m not saying that this little chair is for everyone, but for someone who is suffering with some sort of degenerative knee injury, it is an essential tool to sow seeds in the ground, pull weeds from the freshly tilled soil, and all the other gardening tasks that would require me to do any sort of kneeling, squatting, or dare I say sitting on the ground.
Several years ago I damaged my right knee while working in the yard. I don’t remember the specifics but do remember the pain to the left of the knee cap on the inside portion of my leg. It was after several weeks of working on my knees, near the end of my project. When I would stand up from my kneeling position I had to stand still for a few minutes in order for my knee to stretch out so I could put some weight on it and then hobble a little to start moving again. Within a few minutes, things would loosen up, the pain would dissipate, and everything went back to normal.
This pain came and went throughout the past two years, only bothering me if I was sitting on the ground with my knee bent for any extended period of time or if I sat on my right leg. Still, the pain would quickly go away once I started moving again.
A month ago, the pain on the side of my knee began to bother me whenever I was sedentary for more than 15 minutes. Not moving around gave my knee an opportunity to stiffen up and every time I got up from a chair or even out of bed, I would hobble around until things loosed up and the pain subsided. Kneeling, squatting, or sitting on the ground were pretty much impossible.
Now the pain is almost constant, even when I do move around or am standing, there is a tinge of pain in my leg and limping seems to be more of a norm than an anomaly.
With the progression of pain and no relief found with Tylenol or wrapping my knee, I seriously questioned how I was going to do any gardening this year. Well, there it was, the little gardening chair I’d gotten for Christmas. I took it with me when I turned over the pea garden and used it to separate the weeds from the loosened soil. Then it was used when I planted row after row of pea seeds.
When I moved over to the large garden in the back and had ten rows of root vegetables to plant, there was no way I would have been able to complete the task had I not had this little seat. Although the pain is still in my leg, it is far easier to get up from this seat than rolling over from a seated position on the ground to my knees and trying to stand. With this little gizmo I just rock back and forth a bit, and pop right up. There is far less pressure on my knee, not to mention how much easier this is making things on my back. Plus, let’s not forget how my butt would feel after sitting on the cold ground if I had to scoot around the garden sowing seeds on it.
Although this is something that is making gardening bearable because of injury, I also think it would be something I would have appreciated if my body wasn’t falling apart. It is amazing how much easier it is getting up from just a foot off the ground compared to ground level. Even Grace has taken to the seat and steals it from me whenever I ask her to help out. For her I think it’s mainly because she doesn’t want to be in the dirt and she sits and rocks in it while I work, but hey, at least she’s comfortable while keeping me company.
So, to Suzanne I have to say THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU! I couldn’t be out there gardening without this, and for YOU I am — Simply Grateful.