Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be, The last of life, for which the first was made: Our times are in His hand Who saith "A whole I planned, Youth shows but half; trust God: see all, nor be afraid!" - From "Rabbi Ben Ezra" by Robert Browning

Friday, May 15, 2009

Dance As If You're Falling On Your Face

Well, I got absolutely nothing done yesterday. I'd pushed hard the day before, getting a lot done, and had no energy left for yesterday. But this morning, however, I was up and out early once more. I moved the chicken kite to a new area, fed the chickens, and sat for a few minutes watching the birds do their morning stretching and dancing. Then it was off to the garden.

This morning I planted 14 yellow squash (straightneck and crookneck), 2 okra, and a horde of peppers! I didn't get the chance to count, but I thought there were at least 24 jalapenos, 2 giant jalapenos, 3 red hot cherry peppers, 3 pimiento, 12 sweet banana, and 18 green bell. I also planted 2 Japenese vining cucumbers at the base of an 8 foot tall garden windmill. The next time out, I'll add several pickling cukes I've grown from seed. It will be great to watch them climb that windmill.

Everything was going really well this morning. My energy level seemed fine, the temperature was comfortable, there was a cool breeze, and the sun wasn't too intense. So I wanted to keep working. I took two short breaks to make sure I didn't over-do it, sitting in the rocker sipping a cold drink while I watched the chickens and petted the dogs who were gathered around my feet.

After my second break, just before I was going to finish planting the peppers, I decided to clean up some of the trash that had accumulated in and around the garden. You know, those plastic collars around peat pots and the multi-plant trays, empty soil and mulch bags, and other stuff (I've got to get a trash can out there). John had left a number of very long pvc pipes on the driveway near the garden gate. He's going to cut them into lengths and use them as tomato stakes. They'd been there for a couple of days, but they hadn't been in my way before this morning.

Well, wouldn't you know it, while trying to step over them, my short legs didn't reach and I ended up standing on them. Because they are round, and not flat, my "standing" s udde nly became a dance as they rolled and I tried to stay upright. It was an ugly dance, but it didn't last long. I was on my face, on the pavement in a heartbeat. I got up with two scraped knees, a scraped elbow, and a tearful sense of defeat. I really thought I was going to get the rest of the veggies planted this morning.

I went in the house and John cleaned me up. I was upset, and it came out in anger. I spent the next 30 minutes screaming inappropriately about the pipes and the trash, and the unfinished work, etc. I hate that about myself. I got my temper under control a long, long time ago; but the "perfect storm" of my hormones rushing to the edge of the menopausal cliff like lemmings, unearthed in me a new level of uncontrolability several years ago, and my generously patient husband was frequently the target of my upset.

Actually, my tirade this morning was nothing compared to what I could have done two years ago. So maybe that's a sign that the storm is almost over.

I returned to the garden and finished planting the peppers, but my knees, which don't do kneeling well anyway, were hurting too much to do anything more. I'll have to finish planting the rest of the veggies another day.

Overall, I'm very happy with how the garden is coming, and I hope we will have a large, healthy harvest. I'm looking forward to canning lots of jalapenos for John, enjoying stuffed bell peppers (a rare treat usually), freezing and drying lots of squash, pickling jars and jars of cucumbers, eating-freezing-and-canning tons of tomatoes, and slicing open ice cold watermelon and cantaloupe when summer reaches it's hottest point in August.

Once my anger subsided, I quickly apologized to John for my outburst. Good husband that he is, he had already forgiven me. My knees will heal long before my heart heals and I forgive myself for letting my temper get away from me once again, however. For the past several years, my hormones seem to have more control of me than I do, and I don't like that.

Angry and irritable is not who I am. It's not who I've spent my life becoming; but this someone I sometimes don't know, this angry me, that snaps so quickly and so brutally at the one person who loves me so dearly... I hope she will be gone soon. I hope the person I once loved being will have a chance to return and finish out the last of my days on this earth, held in the loving, secure embrace of my husband, whom I do dearly love. I hope she will return and bring back the peace I used to know, and the joy I always felt in living each day in the grace and blessedness of knowing Christ, the center and source of my sole reason for being.

We're off to a local, popular fish camp tonight to have dinner with my mom and dad. John has eaten there since childhood, and has gone on and on about it since we wed. Tonight will be the first time for me and my folks. I hear they specialize in catfish, and my dad can certainly enjoy a plateful of catfish! My mom will want shrimp, I'm sure. Me? I think I'm in the mood for oysters! Ooooh!

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