Autumn

Autumn

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tears

Sunday morning, early, I awoke and built a pot of coffee then walked outside for my paper. It was warm and it felt good to be out in the fresh air. The river was as flat as a sheet of glass.

When I turned to walk back inside, the condition of my yard caught my attention. It was a mess. We'd had a few days of strong winds and since I own many trees; several species of oak, a couple of Hickory and pine, the yard was a mess of fallen branches and Spanish moss. The lawn was overgrown and in bad need of a cut. Our property was ugly and it bugged me.

I read my paper, drank a couple cups of coffee then quietly dressed. I slipped past Sweet Wife into the garage grabbed an old wooden basket I use for yard trash and a rake. I cleaned. Thought to myself, 'Well, she hasn't missed me.'

The  next part of my plan would be tricky, the mower. First I sharpened the blade. I'm anal-retentive that way. Most people like to beat their grass to death. I like to cut it. Anyhow, afterward, I topped the gas tank, eased the mower out on our driveway and fired it up. Second gear and I was gone.

  
It felt so good, work. I'd made it about fifteen or twenty feet when I felt a tap on my shoulder. She said, "Stop." I put the mower in idle and waited as she chewed my butt. Glanced around to see if any of my neighbors had walked outside for the show. Me, all embarrassed.

Sweet Wife, "You can't do this, are you nuts. Do you want to drop dead..." Rhetorical. I replied I felt fine, no pain. Please just leave me alone as my manhood was in question. I slip the clutch and tried to escape. I remember thinking how the smell of fresh cut grass always reminds me of watermelon. A second or two later she slapped my arm, and her such a little lady, gone all butch on me.

I shut the mower off. Stood there, ready to fight. Then, I see she has tears. Her face wet.  Tracks of moisture, like tiny rivers. "Please," she said. Her hands shook. My resolve broke.

She took the mower and gave it a little shove, as if to bay the demon.


There was little use in my argument. All people have an innate limitation alarm. My body was fine. My strength not limited. I felt like a million bucks, but my darling Georgia Peach was afraid. She was scared to death. We talked as she walked me towards the garage. I held her close and soothed her fears. She repeated, over and over, "What would I do without you..." I shushed her. "But they said...."

"No," I said, "They, are wrong. Nothing hurts."

Still, she cried. I'm as a baby in the presence of tears. She explained she'd called our son and he was on the way to finish my work. My work....

Every man needs to know his limitations. Mine are tears.

Stephen

41 comments:

  1. Good. Taking care of family includes emotionally, too, and she's had the daylights scared out of her these last few months. It will take time for HER to heal, too.

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    1. It seems so, my friend. Thank you.

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  2. I am glad you know your limitations and I am glad you comforted her. That is a true sign of a man anyway.

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    1. Thanks, Pretty Girl. I'm really fine...must wait until next weeks test to prove it to my wife and the doctors.

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  3. Phyllis (N/W Jersey)May 1, 2012 at 1:40 PM

    There are probably a million or more men out there that wish their wives would cry some tears of caring for them. You, Stephen, are truly blessed. Hug an treasure her as she truly loves you!

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    1. Oh, trust me, Phyllis, I do indeed treasure her, and love her more....thanks.

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  4. Would she go walking with you? Around the neighborhood? gradually lengthening the time to where you can show her you're ready for grass cutting? You might have to let your son do it this year but it'd be good, safe way to rebuild your stamina and relieve her stress over this.

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    1. We do walk together, Matt. Each evening at eight if she's home on time and isn't too tired. No way in hell I'd allow my son to cut and care for my yard. Really, all BS aside, I'm fine. The doctor just told he didn't want me 'doing this and that' until after my stress test scheduled for next week. I feel great. It's just a precaution. My strength never left. It was just set aside for a few weeks after the infection. Thanks, my friend.

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  5. So we now know what is Superman's weakness...tears, be it Sweet Wife or Little Bit. A few tears and we all go to mush.

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    1. Yea, you've found my Achilles heal. Thanks, Rob.

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  6. You have a good woman there sir . . . . a good woman indeed!

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    1. Indeed, my friend, and I thank God for her everyday. She is special, pretty too....

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  7. I understand, my friend. My wife, a VERY strong woman, doesn't often exhibit tears. When she does, I'm a goner ... every time.

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    1. Girls cry - I melt. Thanks, my good friend.

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  8. Stephen, Dear Stephen, your Sweet Wife loves you dearly and wants you around for a long time. I agree with Matt, continue to gradually build your stamina. Then go take that next stress test, if you pass and the doctor is okay with adding more physical activity, then gradually cut the grass. Take several days to do so. I know your bored and tired of taking it easy. You want to get back to your old self and get moving. Trust me take advantage of healing slowly. My husband had no choice one day after being rushed to the ER with symptoms of a heart attack. After surgery, they found out he has stress ischemia on one wall of the heart. This caused him to have all the same symptoms of a heart attack, passed out and stop breathing. Now he is on medicatins and carries nitro and uses it when he has chest pains like a heart attack. It took him a while to get back to doing regular yard work. Be careful!!!!

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    1. That's just it, Sandy. I'm fine. Test or no test. The doctor is just being cautious. Then again, we'll see after next Monday. I haven't had a twinge of pain since the big day...
      Now, having said that, it'll bite me right in the butt.
      Thanks, Sweet Sandy.

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  9. oh my dear sweet friend - you know that i could go all *pe-shit on you and tell you all kinds of things that you shouldn't do! but you know that i know that you are a man. and as a man, there are certain things that you MUST be able to do! like assuage your wife's tears - if you can't do that then you are not a man! i happen to know that you can - which is why Little Bit and me and jambaloney love you so much! and you have to understand, that in my role as a wife, i can only expose jambaloney to proper types of men - he has been let down in his life by the men who have been in his life - do you understand?!?!?!? and i encourage him to come here so i expect that you will set the standard, Stephen.

    i expect you to set the standard. and i mean that from the very bottom of my heart. and if you don't, dear friend, i will come down there and kick the living shi*t out of you. my promise.

    your friend,
    kymber

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    1. Talk, talk, talk. I love you, too.

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    2. Did kymber just censor the ape in ape-sh!t? I was about to post all serious, but now I'm giggling too much.

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  10. Stephen, my friend, I'm with every one else. TAKE CARE OF YOUR SELF!! I don't know how big your yard is. Maybe, a riding mower. (Make a Tim Allen grunt noise.) My Dad had about 5 acre's or so of Yard, when he and my Mom lived in Arkansas. When he and she moved back here to Colorado, he brought his riding mower with him. He would cut his yard, and the next door neighbors yard, front and back with the riding mower. The neighbor, would do the trimming.

    Just because you can't mow right now. Doesn't mean you can't mow for ever. I know my Dad felt stronger, after his heart attack, after a month or so. He would mow for a bit, then quit. And then do some more after a hour or so.

    Your wife and little bit, and family here in blog land, want you around. So, just take it a bit easier for now. And let us know how the stress test goes.

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    1. Flier, I will take it easy. It's just so hard when you're bored out of your mind and feel good. My mower, though not a rider, is self-powered. I'm really in pretty damn good shape for a twenty year old fella....
      Thank you, kind sir.

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  11. damn.....my wife would fill the gas tank up....point out what direction i needed to go, and then run in to call the life insurance company.....you are so blessed.

    (hope Lil' Bit don't find out huh?)

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    1. Warlock, I bet your wife would act much as mine. Fact is, mine has had two scares with me within two months and she's afraid I won't survive a third. Indeed, I am blessed to have her. No, we didn't tell Little Bit. She'd kick me for sure. Thanks, my good friend.

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  12. You, sir, are one lucky man to have such a wife.

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    1. Thanks, my friend. Aren't we all though...glad to see you're finally home. Take care.

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  13. Being a man, I know exactly how you feel. I've never paid anyone to do one damn thing for me, and I don't ask for help unless something is impossible to do by myself. And being a man, my wife's tears have exactly the same effect on me. That's why we're still here in this place which I no longer wish to be...

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    1. Craig, you and I are alot alike...I too refuse to use a lawn service like most of my neighbors. First of all I'm too frugal, secondly it would hurt my pride. I hate to ask, and don't, for help. Like you said, being a man it hurts to see one I love cry. Makes me feel awful especially if I'm the cause of those tears. Thanks, my friend.

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  14. Please, please, please take care of yourself. Let the know it all's tell you if it's ok to take on this kind of project.

    And, don't hesitate to call if you want a little hand (not your son's) to help out. We are more than happy to do so.

    My FIL is just like you, albiet at bit older. Husband asked if it might be (Dad) talking about not letting anyone else, especially his son, help out. He's a lot like you.

    Husband is very willing to blow the roof, but on more than one occasion have found 80+ year old Dad on the roof, blowing the stupid leaves! Not worth it if someone else can do it! Even I can get up there better than him and MIL, and be more than willing to do so!

    Call if you need us ...

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    1. Thank you for the kind offer, my sweet friend. I'm fine. I've a 32 year old son if I need him. Kills my soul, but for his mother's sake I'll use him. Until next week....

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  15. I suggest getting your favorite beverage and a comfortable lawn chair with maybe one of those dorky umbrella hats and a foot stool and then sit outside while someone mows and tell them how you want it done. Then ask the wife to fetch ya more beverage and rub your shoulders.

    I mean if ya gotta give in might as well go for broke :)

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    1. i gotta go with PioneerPreppy on this one...he's on to something here Stephen! and i don't want to have to put my *ss-kickin' boots on - ya hear?

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    2. PP, nope, can't do it. Not my style.

      kymber, those tiny boots better be filled with lead...thanks to you both, my friends.

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    3. Stephen - I think you may be missing my jest. After an afternoon of rubbing it in and making demands they maybe more amiable to letting you set your own limits once again. /Wink

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    4. Stephen,
      Are you listening to Pioneer Preppy and Kymber? Oh, by the way....I have lead filled boots I can lend Kymber, lol.

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    5. PP, I know. No worries. I hate limits. Never have lived with 'em and don't like the feeling now. Thank you.

      Sandy, dear lady, I'm quite capable of picking the little half pint kymber up with one arm and hugging you both with my other....bring it on. But, thank you for the kind concern. You're both sweet and lovely ladies.

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  16. Posts like this are why I come here. If I just wanted guns and politics I have a thousand places I could go. But to have good, honest, heartfelt emotion displayed with such excellent writing skill is a rare thing indeed. Keep it up, and listen to Nana you hardhead!

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    1. Shucks - all red faced here....Swamp Dog, thank you so very much for the kind compliment. You made my day.

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  17. But now, seriously. The grass isn't worth it.

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    1. I know, really, grass isn't worth the pain. Thanks, my good friend.

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  18. Once you've had the stress test, the results will probably confirm what you already sense - you feel fine. Hopefully that will stifle any fears you dear wife has.

    Just make sure you are sitting down when you get the bill. Hubby had his three-year stress test last year. What the medical professionals were not able to tell him was how much we would end up paying out of pocket for the radiology portion of the test which the insurance doesn't seem to cover any more. There's nothing like paying $1000 for a stinking test. Watch those doctors' offices, they have a habit of scheduling tests and appointments in December to make sure they end the year in the black.

    One time hubby went to his appointment, and the doctor asked him
    "Why are you here?"
    Hubby replied, "Your office said I needed an appointment."
    Doctor sad, "You're fine; go home. mumble, mumble, grr, schedulers."

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  19. I truly hope so my dear lady. I'm glad you mentioned the insurance. I'll call them tomorrow. I know they set their scheduled appointments to generate cash - they're all buttholes. Thanks, my dear friend.

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