The last of my summer tomatoes had a stubborn streak. They were staying green.
I brought them into the house recently. Maybe I didn’t want the critters to get to them. Maybe I figured I could have them ripen on the counter at their own speed.
Or maybe I was just tired of the daily watering. Our relentless hot, dry summer carried into September.
My first instinct…the windowsill. Still green.
I moved them into baskets somewhat away from the light source. Still green.
Then I happened upon a tip that suggested putting them in darkness, specifically a brown paper bag.
There are certain gases emitted during the ripening process that, once captured and contained, will benefit the ripening.
It is working.
They are turning yellow, orange, then the desired red. Once in that brown bag, I stopped interfering, and the process evolved in its own time.
We are very much like that.
I have suffered bouts of depression over the years. Words of advice from caring friends and family never worked. Surrounding myself with joy and light didn’t always help. Mostly, the contrast was painful.
At times, we all need to go into that dark place and heal, in our own way, at our own pace.
People will notice. They will worry. They will try to help you to a brighter place.
But it is still our own brown bag.
Let it rest.
I was given a similar tip about putting green tomatoes in a paper bag with a couple of red ones. They turned within four days. However, we knew someone who made chutneys for a tea rooms and preferred green tomatoes so nothing was wasted and we got the oocasional free cream tea!
We had a lot of fried green tomatoes growing up…so, they are not ever wasted. Still…I love them ripe. Thanks. ☺
Darkness has its uses x
It surely does, Sue. Thanks for understanding that.
Thank you, Derrick.
We all need a brown paper bag sometimes Van. Just remember to take it off when you get into the car. Hugs xoxo
Ha ha. Will do ! Good advice, Val. Have a great day. 💘
Terrific advice, Van. We are all different and we all heal in our own way and time.
Those words, with honorable intent, really don’t help much, George. Thanks. 💘
So well said!
Sometimes, the writing is motivated by such simple ideas, Doc. Thanks. 💕
I’m so with you van, our dark space.
It is not always a negative, Sawsan. There has to be balance, but still…Thanks. 💕
Later alligator, thinking and writing about you.
I’m still at home. Travel plans moved back a bit, M. ☺
A wonderful post. I grow cherry tomatoes, so they seem to ripen quickly and I find myself not harvesting too many green ones. As far as the dark places are concerned, most have them, and probably all have some well intentioned people offering not so helpful advice. I use my dark spaces to write, and that helps me extricate myself on occassion. I hope that you are having a wonderful day and that your tomatoes are delicious.
Writing has been therapy for me for a very long time. It took this platform for me to start sharing it.☺ Thanks, Rob. And yes, they are delicious, and were worth the wait. 🍅 🍅 🍅
Each of us possess a uniqueness that exceeds our comprehension. This adds to the beauty of humanity. It also adds to the complexity when attempting to understand individual needs. Sometimes we need to do things in life without clearly understanding WHY. Whether it is termed innate, intuition or spiritual guidance it usually provides the solutions needed.
I have always believed in that intuitive spirit, Doc. Thanks for a thoughtful comment. ❤️
(((HUGS))), Van. I totally understand. I cannot believe how my post today must have really spoken to you. I am covered in goosebumps. It’s amazing how right on my Heart is in guiding me. Take care, dear friend!! And am very happy about those tomotoes!!! …. ❤ ❤ ❤
We were surely thinking the same way today, Amy. I was thrilled to see your heartfelt post. Thanks, always. 💘 Hugs back to you.
That is so true! When I feel sad then the joy can make the sadness even stronger. But looking at the sadness and accepting it makes us look closer to the essence and all of a sudden it dissolves. At least I experienced this too. Btw. a great tip with the tomatoes! 💖
Glad you enjoyed, the tip…was priceless for me. 💖
I love the analogy you found! Wonderfully inspiring, Van!
Thanks so much, Erika. It seemed right to me. 💘
Feels right to me too 💖
I totally agree. Equally I find that no matter how good or bad my day is I need to open my front door and find time to just ‘be’.
We are just human be-ings after all, Tric. Thanks. ❤️
Interesting analogy; I’ve never really needed the paper bag but i get fully that some do and that it is best to let them come out in their own time. Understanding that takes time and experience.
Right on all counts. Thanks, Geoff. 💕
Great analogy. Organic chemistry / Psychology. Cool!
Thanks so much. 💕
You have said such true and wise words in such a simple way, Van. #Respect and love for you… ❤ I feel we all need that brown bag, at some point of life….to bring out the real colour that's within us… 🙂
I believe that is the very essence of what I was saying, Mani. Thanks so much for the affirmation. 💕
🙂 ❤ …. welcome
Beautiful metaphors Van. I so have to agree, sometimes we all need to go to a secret place and be alone to bring back our color. ❤ (PS once again weirdpress isn't letting me post, so I will try getting this comment through with my facebook I.D. I wonder if the original attempt will go to spam?)
It worked this time. Thanks so much for the lovely comment, Debby. 💘 Maybe WP is doing some upgrades ??? That always means trouble. ☺
This was incredible.Youve just summed up my story for the last year. I love the metaphors. Thanks for sharing.
My pleasure, Vinny. Thanks for the read and comment. Glad you could relate. ☺
Thanks for the reply.. and for making it relatable.
Analogy is a wonderful teacher. I love this one. I am a firm believer that there’s a time to grieve and be still and rest in the dim light. I’m thinking of another tomato trick we used to keep green tomatoes from ripening so we could have them on into late fall. We separated them and wrapped them in newspaper. I don’t know how it worked but isolation and completely keeping air away from the fruit stunted it’s ability to mature and become ripe. What do you think? I see that as total isolation from peers being too much-cuts off oxygen/care.
Thanks, Lisa. Love the tomato trick, and yes, that isolation can be helpful in many ways. A very interesting response. ☺
The post is so great! I love it so much:)
Have a nice day!
Thanks for the visit and comment, Irene. ☺
We’ve had the opposite in that our Summer has been too cool and wet for our tomatoes to ripen, Van. Same for our Strawberries, although they have all of a sudden burst into life.
We are a mix of rain/flooding in some areas of the US, or widespread drought conditions. Would love a happy medium, Hugh. Thanks for the comment. Hope the WP gurus figure out your spam issues. 💖
So do I, Van. It’s proving very frustrating, especially given that once WordPress deem a comment as spam, they don’t send you a notification email that you been fished out of spam and replied to. The only way of finding the reply is by checking the notifications box in the top left hand corner of your blog.
Or you can make fried green tomatoes.
I do enjoy those, but these are smaller varieties, 2-3 inch diameter. I also had a lot of green cherry tomatoes. So…maybe not ? Thanks, Linda. 🍅
Stick with brown paper. It works.
I enjoy fried green tomatoes. I get upset when my tomatoes turn red before they grow big as I like.
Yep…Not sure how to control that one. ☺
This really spoke to me, van. When I’m low I hear “I just wish there was something I could do” from my loved ones, and now that I have kids I understand. It’s brutal to watch them in pain, so I get why they want so desperately to drag me into the light. Your post is a beautiful expression of why we sometimes need our own space to heal. Thank you.
Most welcome, Laura. I’m both glad, and sorry, that you can relate. 💖
❤️❤️❤️ Van! You probably have seen this but I hope it’s okay to share here….http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.ca/2011/10/adventures-in-depression.html?m=1
This was a great representation. I’m sorry she is no longer blogging. Thanks for sharing, Hedy. 💖
yes i wonder where she is now…maybe a book…thank you for sharing Van ❤ ❤ ❤
Love the analogy and everything about this post! xx
Thank you so much, Lynn. 💘
loved your analogy here Van.. glad the tomatoes are ripening .. And yes I agree being in that space I know I have often been.. ❤
💝 Thanks, Sue.
Yes. I still have to crawl into that paper bag at times.
I guess we all do, Karen. 💝
Fantastic analogy. There are times I just want to be left alone inside my brown bag.
We all feel that way at times, J. ☺
Beautiful metaphor. My son is now in his brown bag. Tough, for he’s supposed to be in school. Taking him to his psychologist this afternoon, but “fixes” for depression aren’t instant.
It’s so heartbreaking to see, especially in a child. I wish him/you the best outcome, Kitt. 💔 And no…those fixes are never quick.
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Thanks so much, Sally. I have found that I do not consider it Christmas until I’ve made this recipe. It is a warm family memory wrapped in a buttery yeast dough. 💖 And, my favorite use of those walnuts !