Friday, March 29, 2013

Perspective

(third person, true story)

The man stood in the kitchen, listening to the 'pop pop pop' of canned red onion marmalade cooling on the counter directly in front of him. Behind him, the canning pot roared full of mint jelly for someone's lamb feast. He leaned on the counter, as a light spring breeze fluttered through clothes needing mending on the line outside. The trees were still without buds, but a fat hen grappled with a worm while another dug her own personal dust bath hole.

Past the bare tree and the hens was the man's wife, kneeling and holding a bottle of milk to a goat kid. A smile played on her lips and a second goat bit at her jacket. The man sighed and laughed as the goat kid reached up with her hooves on her back and attempted to eat her hair like hay. He pulled on his boots and headed down to the barn to help her with the dozens who needed rations and attention.

Never in his life did he think he would have this dream. The two of them, starting a season together, working only on their farm. Later in the kitchen, the man leaned over a bowl of warm water, washing dozens of eggs. Two dogs sat by the wood stove which crackled with a new fire. The woman leaned over to him with a spoon full of cookie dough. They chatted while they went about their various tasks. The waves of appreciation for their life washed over him.

The man's mind drifted back a few years ago, when his life was nothing like today. Chaos, arguing, tough in all the wrong ways job, heartache ... he thought this was just how adulthood was supposed to be. Now he was in the room with someone who he loved so dearly, and who was every way his match. Sentimental, sure, but also honest.

They struggled, they bickered (not often, but sometimes), and they worked many hours a day. But they did it together, towards the same goal. As a child, he had always imagined a quiet life where a movie night after a long day of work was enough, and welcomed. It took a great number of years, effort and trials to get to the place they were today. And it's true, they could fail. But it's also true that it would all be worth it.

As the man set the eggs into cartons and then into the fridge, he felt whole.

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