It was OUR dream.
We loved to garden together. That was our ‘good times.’ We didn’t bring any other interference into our garden time. It was just me, him and Mother Earth – no marital problems – no anxiety – no mental illness. Gardening was the best times for us these last few years.
Our dream was in our retirement years to have a huge vegetable garden and a roadside stand. We would can what we couldn’t sell. We have been in prep mode these last few years, building up to OUR dream. We gardened, we harvested, we canned.
We called our little homestead a faux farm because it was not sustainable. Some years we had bumper crops, some years we might have a tomato. We knew if the apocalypse came and we had to survive on our own land – we would be the first to die.
We chronicled our success and failures on our Facebook page, Spooky Hollow Southern Mississippi. We laughed at our failures. We took great pride in our successes. One year, our cucumber crop was so large, we gave those away as party favors for my granddaughter’s birthday.
We even had fun scooping the poop – so much fun that I wrote a poem of one our adventures on May 21, 2010 (never dreaming that 9 years later – almost to the date – my husband would be dead from his own hand).
“I do not like to scoop the poop. I do not like it sticking to my boots. I do not like the way it smells. And now I do not feel so swell. But Bubba-Man says I do not give a dam. We are here to scoop the poop. We do not care if it sticks to boots. We do not care how bad it smells, because this will make our garden swell.”
Such enjoyable times.
But those days are gone now. My husband killed those dreams when he killed himself.
I am faced with downsizing. I have a huge assortment of canning jars and nowhere to put them. I tried to find places to stuff them, but no such luck. Then I realized I would probably never have need for this many jars and I must face parting with them. That thought stabbed me in the heart and actually brought tears to my eyes.
Isn’t is silly to cry over canning jars? Grief – a miserable necessity.
I know I can still have a garden – a smaller one. I know I will still can my produce – just not as much. I do not know if I will ever have a roadside vegetable stand. But what’s the point anyway? What I do know is I will not be sharing this experience with my husband. That was the whole point – him and I – conquering this dream together – sharing this intimate experience that was only between us.
The prize was in the process. OUR process. Not his process. Not my process. OUR process.
OUR gardening trumped every bad experience in life. We were in tune with each other, and only with each other. A true union.
Our gardening experience – this is ‘us’. No, that’s not right. This ‘was us’ – this was ‘the good us’.
It hurts like heck letting go of a dream.
I’m not sure if I will ever enjoy gardening again.
(Just a note – I am finding healing in giving back. My side job – my Avon business – is helping me do that. My daughter and SIL have a personal ministry of ministering to college students in their home on Monday nights. They break bread, play games and speak the gospel. Recently, they fed as much as 24 people, all on a youth minister’s salary. God provides. I am tithing my online order proceeds to their ministry. Every little bit helps. Would you please check out my website? If this is your first time ordering Avon online, use code WELCOME10 for 10% off any size order. Be sure to check out our other deals. We always have some. Avon isn’t only make-up. If you have not seen an Avon brochure in a while, check us out. Your products will be delivered directly to your door. Some of the college students are foreign exchange students. From a hand built table in southern Mississippi, the gospel is managing to be spread around the world. Would you shop from my online store and have a part in spreading God’s word?)