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LIfe crashes in when one member of a supporting team isn’t on call

My husband, God love him, holds down the fort when I leave to pursue my heart’s content (or a job or whatever). He never complains or makes me feel guilty. But I know how difficult it is for him. We tend to set up a life that takes two people to run. We create a demanding existence that falls to ruin without both captions at the helm. He has his duties, but when I am gone, he must juggle mine as well. And it is frustrating and exhausting. This week, school began. He is running the kids to school and picking them up, and taking my daughter to soccer (something new we are trying) and my son to band practice and drum lessons, while still building the house. And he must feed all the animals (my job) and feed everyone else too. And his father is so sick, his sister needs help. Today, he must watch his Dad for four hours while Dianne is at a physical therapist appointment with their mother, and he has to find a way to get the kids picked up from school etc…. He is going crazy.

I told a friend here how badly I felt dumping life on my spouse while I teach in Boston (a job I don’t have to accept). She shrugged and said, “He can manage 5 days. It is good for a man to experience all the crap his wife does. Makes him appreciate you.”

I don’t agree. I believe he appreciates me without torture as a reminder. And I certainly don’t have to experience his crap. You don’t see me gassing up the tractor to take it for a backhoe spin or plugging in the sander to work on logs because he is busy.
 
Yesterday, he called to tell me a huge wind storm occurred. Lasted only 15 minutes. When he got to the land, a tree had fallen on our garage where we keep the tractor. Another tree fell across the road making it impossible to drive in . Another tree fell on the pasture fence and the horses were down the street. He had to scurry all over putting things in order, knowing he would now need to spend a day chain sawing these trees to remove them,  having to talk with the guy to repair the fence. Now, he has to feed the horses in an inconvenient place (lower pasture)until things are fixed.   He has to talk to the insurance guy, and arrange for a new garage. Insurance does not include getting the smashed one removed – big drag.

I felt so badly, because his plate is so full. I need to get home – do my part.
This also puts our tree dilemma back up for discussion. We have all these beetle eaten pines that must be removed (I’ll write a tree blog another day) Huge job.

Anyway, today I am feeling guilty. I take my role in our union very seriously – I am supposed to contribute to the quality of life of the guy who cared enough to make a commitment to me (which I am fully aware was a brave choice for any guy – living with a girl like me requires an ongoing leap of faith.)  

I can’t stop the trees from falling, but I sure want to be there to wave my hands frantically as an assistant when Mark maneuvers the tractor this way and that to remove them. 
A good life demands a team effort and I want to be a team player. It is only fair.

 

About Ginny East Shaddock

Director of Heartwood Retreat Center, Ginny is also a writer. This is her personal blog with essay form writing about life and reflection. My entries are often lengthy and random, because I'm not here to promote or sell anything. I'm not expecting followers - just find this format a good place to think with the pen.

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