Between a full schedule, a problematic lawnmower, recently applied fertilizer and a rainy season that would have encouraged nostalgic reminiscing among Noah’s family members, I had not gotten to the lawn for a few weeks and the grass was in desperate need of being mowed. I contemplated taking to it with a machete, but my backfiring lawnmower (obviously I did not get all the issues resolved) was my weapon of choice as I tackled the grass that happens to be on a 45-degree angle (more or less) lawn. As with all experiences in life, great lessons came of the time.
Go Slow…Smell the….St. Augustine
A neighbor drove by and struck up a conversation as I edged the sidewalk.
“Gonna cut the yard, huh?” he said. “It’s going to hard since its wet,” he added.
“Yep, and it’s going to rain again soon. But I have to cut it now that I have a chance.” After a couple of minutes of small talk, he drove off, obviously pleased with having shared his wisdom about wet grass being hard to mow, especially when it is jungle high on a 45-degree angle (more or less).
There is another truth about high, well-fertilized St. Augustine grass when cut in thick, humid conditions: the aroma is rich and it hangs in the air to be consumed, feeding memories of little league practice, mowing lawns for extra money, and teaching young sons the suburban tradition of weekend mowing.
Go slow in tasks, chores … in life … and let your senses feed you.
Don’t Give Up
I probably didn’t mention that I have a good ol’ push lawnmower. An until recently reliable Briggs engine powers the blade but not the wheels. It goes nowhere unless it is pushed. Now seems like a good time to bring up the point.
While cutting the grass in a pattern that follows the length of the yard instead of using an up-and-down pattern on the 45-degree angle (more or less) would be easier, it would not look as good. It’s worth it. Good outcomes are worth time, effort and exertion, no matter to what goals the effort is expended.
In the interest in transparency, I just turned Medicare age, so tackling the project in the conditions of the day required a few breaks but I believe that I had a better outcome than in the old days of youth when success was measured more by the speed in which I finished than by the final look.
Take breaks. Recharge. Don’t give up. Never, ever surrender, as I tell my sons frequently. Some goals are not reached in hours, days, weeks, months or years…sometimes the desired outcome takes decades (that will be a story for another day). Never…ever…surrender.
Hydration matters. If I counted correctly the number of 32-ounce tumblers my wife filled for me, as well as those in the evening, I figure I drank almost a gallon and one-half. Recharging my fluids was a good thing, but, as with all things, the main purpose is not where all the benefits reside. With each refill, I got a wink and a kiss; with each break, my body felt the cooling, calming of ice water; at each pause, I reviewed the progress of my efforts; with each swallow I got a sense of “I got this.” And I did.
As much as your body needs the hydration, your spirit can benefit from the refreshing pauses if you enjoy the time and not just the fluid.
This morning, I looked through the blinds at the grass that was cut 18 hours before. I think it had grown. So, too, is life; it is never over until it is over. And that is a blessing if we see it as such.