Rain, Legos, & Jalapeno Peppers…

Rain!  Hallelujah, Wichita Falls is getting rain.  Cool, steady rain.  Rain after the longest, driest, hottest summer on record.  If only Mark were here, he’d be out in it, dancing….

Seeing the forecast, I rushed to put fresh batteries in our digital rain gauge.  Barely got them installed & outdoor gauge reattached to fence before it started.  Mark, being a Kansas farm boy, was always big on weather, particularly rain.  I’ve been travelling to his parents’ farmhouse for almost a quarter century, and the kitchen’s old chalkboard always has the daily rain amount posted.  Good farmers must keep track of such important information.  The chalkboard, something that’s been in that farmhouse forever, is something my sentimental husband wanted from his mom whenever she eventually moves.  I still want it for our boys. 

Picked a lone jalapeno pepper today from a plant he tended through the dry summer.  Before he went into the hospital, he asked me to keep it alive….believe me, it hasn’t been easy.  But patience, regular watering, and keeping the rabbits away worked, and I know he’s smiling & nodding that it’s producing.  Guess I’ll have to eat it with supper.  There’s something very comforting about nurturing something that he started.  (Now that’s a sentence that will require a whole other posting).

Tough day yesterday as I spent a counseling session without the boys.  Didn’t know that I could cry so hard, so long, or so continuously for 45 minutes, but I did.  What is it about that one-on-one counseling that allows me to just open up my very soul and everything comes spilling out?  It’s cathartic and exhausting, simultaneously. 

Struggling to find a way to tell the counselor what I was feeling, it came to me like an epiphany.  Our lives with Mark were like a beautifully-built Lego castle, every piece put into place.  Whenever he died, it’s as if someone came along and kicked the castle into pieces, and they are scattered everywhere.  I’m trying my best to scurry around and pick up the various pieces, and striving to find some way to put things back together again.  I know it won’t be the same, or as perfect as it was before, but it needs to be done.

The counselor, who chooses his words carefully, told me that I was trying too hard to do too much too quickly.  He advised me to “leave the pieces where they are” for awhile.  And to let God lead me when the time comes to begin picking up those pieces. 

He’s right.  I’m wanting to be “done” with this process.  That doesn’t mean I love my husband any less–if anything, it’s because I love him so much that I can hardly stand thisThis hurts.  It’s on my mind every waking second.  He’s in my dreams every night.  I see the longing in both of our sons’ eyes as they miss him, miss his touch, his laugh, his rough-housing with them. 

The counselor asked me if I enjoyed Mark.  Well, heck yes, that’s the understatement of the year, sure I enjoyed him!  He then told me that he has people sit in my chair frequently who did not enjoy their loved ones while they were alive, and they have regrets after their death.  My only regret was that we didn’t have him for 40 more years. 

Today, I start taking his advice.  I’m going to try to be content and leave the pieces where they are, and just seek to get the day-to-day “have tos” completed.  I will aim to keep my “way-A” type personality under control, and let God work His plans in His time. 

Okay, if you’ll excuse me, I “have to” step over a bunch of Legos….I need a recipe that calls for an organically-grown fresh jalapeno pepper.