“It’s a learning process”

One of my co-workers told me that she was so proud of me for coming back to work and staying strong and getting the job done.  She said that I was very strong.

Some days, I feel strong… some days I feel weak.  Sometimes weakness leads to strength.  Occasionally, strength dissolves to weakness.  Grief is a strange beast.

Earlier this week, I noticed that the one jeep tire was low.  John has cool caps for the jeep that are green if the tire is full and turn red if it is low.  The passenger rear was 1/2 red.

The evening got off to a rough start (not including the tire).  I went to take Nathaniel out while I fed.  He enjoys playing with rocks.  When you’re a year old, it’s really cool to pick up rocks & put them on a plate.  Don’t ask me why, but it is.  It has occupied him for days!  As long as he doesn’t eat them, get dust in his eyes, or get too filthy, I’m fine with it.  Happy toddler= happy mom!

Well, it was raining when I headed out… just a drizzle, but a COLD drizzle.  Not weather that a youngster needed to be out in if it could be avoided.  So, I stuffed Nathaniel in the pack & play on the porch and decided to turbo feed.

Nathaniel promptly decided that was not appropriate… he’d rather be in the drizzle plating rocks.  So, he screamed…. and screamed… and screamed…

I fed quickly.

Then debated the pros and cons of filling the tire.  I needed gas in the Subaru and didn’t have time to stop for gas.  I could chance the tire.  But… probably not the smartest move.  Adding air to a tire is complex enough… attempting to change a tire is out of my league for right now.

So, I decided to fill the tire.  John had recently gotten a new air compressor.  He’d gotten it with the idea that it would be easy for me to use.

Well… he over-estimated my abilities.  I’ve tried to use it several times and end up letting more air out of the tires than I’m putting in.  I’ve quit in disgust several times with the John Deere tire.  Threw up my hands and found a man to help.

Well… that evening there was no man… there was no help.

So, I figured that I had to be smarter than the air compressor… it can’t be THAT difficult.

It started poorly… the tire gauge was loosing air.  I was loosing patience.  Nathaniel was screaming…. and screaming… and screaming.

There I was… sitting on the ground in the cold drizzle, with a baby screaming and no help… loosing air.  I thought… this is my life… this is reality.  I was so frustrated.  I wanted to cry, but what good would that do.

Then somehow I got the positioning correct and air went into the tire.  I stopped, re-capped, and took the baby inside.  I even had time for a shower before work.  Everybody lived.  Tire was filled.  Life went on.  I accomplished something.  I don’t feel like I was proficient and learned a new skill.  I think luck and persistence is what got me through that task.

In the end… it’s whatever works.  I know that my new life won’t always be pretty.  It won’t always be easy.  It won’t ever be the same.  I  will have happiness.  I will have deep sadness and loneliness.  But, life continue till the end (how is that for a profound statement).  Life is to short to wallow in despair.  Anger is a wasted emotion (Thanks, Steve, for reminding me).  Hopefully, I have a lot of living left to do.

Most importantly, I never want to be in the position where Nathaniel grows up and tells people about his childhood and says, “My mom gave up.”  “My mom quit.”  “My father’s death left my mother in shambles.”  I want him to grow up and say that he had a great childhood and his mother raised him well.  I want him to know how much his father loved him… loved us… and what a great person he was.  I hope that Nathaniel grows up to be a lot like his father… a good person… moral… ethical… true to himself… honest… hardworking… courageous… with an awesome sense of humor… a thinker… a fighter… confident… faithful… committed… loyal… intelligent… dedicated… and so many other things that John was…

The sun rises, the sun sets, time passes on… how you chose to use your time is up to you.  I don’t want life to pass me by.  Onward & upward.

About Mary K. Smith

I was widowed in July 2009, when I lost my beloved husband, John, to melanoma. Cancer SUCKS. We have a young son who was just a year old when his father died. I live on a small farm in Maryland which is home to horses, cats, and a dog. I started this blog as a way for me to heal, a way to remember my husband, and eventually I'd like to share it with our son so he can see the love that his father had for him, the love that we had for each other, what a great person his father was, and how hard his father fought to live.
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