Monday, February 27, 2012

That Stinking Grass Still Grows

Jodie here. I read Edie's last post and had to smile. Okay, so it was more like a grimace, but I tried, right? See, there are things that happen when you're a military wife and your husband is gone. It's the craziest thing. The garbage that he always took out still accumulates. The car that he always washed still gets dirty. And the grass--that stinking grass--it still grows.

During an early extended TDY, I resented the garbage. It took me three weeks to figure out I resented it because he always did it, and the fact I had to do it just reminded me he wasn't there to do it.

I'd made peace with the garbage by the third deployment. This time it was the grass. My husband loves working in the yard and, being the amazing military wife I just knew I was, it was my determination to handle it all by myself. I did well, until the lawnmower started acting up. And the grass at the back of the yard grew thicker than the grass at the front. And Tennessee heated up hotter than a brick oven in a New York pizzeria. There came the day it took me three days to mow the back yard and only after I practically gave myself heat stroke and had to lay on the bathroom floor until the world stopped twirling like a ballerina. I conquered the lawn on day three and celebrated with a steak on the grill... then called a lawn guy to handle it the rest of the summer. Sometimes, you have to realize you can't do it all. (Uhm, lesson I'm still learning...)

On day two and a half, I was thinking about my church. They did amazing things for our military overseas, sending care packages and sermons, praying... They were there for us wives with group meals at holidays and gifts for our kids... And if I had asked, I'm sure they'd have mowed my grass. But I'm one of those proud people who won't ask no matter what. Instead, I started having this fantasy as I sweat and circled, that someone would appear and mow that grass for me. It was the most amazing fantasy ever. It wasn't a pity party, just the realization that I'd taken on one thing too much. I wanted someone to swoop in and take that one thing too many out of my hands, to somehow know I needed it.

I guess the point is this... If you truly want to help, look at those things around your house that come around with regularity, then ask if you can help. Better yet, just step in and do it, even anonymously, even once. You'll bring a deployed-spouse Army wife to tears, I promise.


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