Today, it almost seems like everything is right with the world.
I got to spend the morning with my wife. First hanging out in the living room, talking about what to do with the day.
Then doing some grocery shopping, picking up a prescription all the while maintaining “social distancing.” Then I focused on mowing the yard. I pumped up the right front tire on my riding mower, topped off the gas, and headed out to mow.
On the riding mower, depression and Covid 19 do not exist.
Using the weed eater to trim the grass at the edge of our front porch was fun. And the finished product looks fantastic. Inspired by how the front yard near the driveway looked after mowing, I did the area around the orchard and then took the tractor around back.
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From there, I mowed inside the fence.
This fenced-in area is likely an acre in size. There is a wooden three slat fence put up by the previous owner. Attached to the inside is a steel wire fence, designed to keep dogs in. When we bought the house, the fence was unpainted. The wood was bleached and spotty.
Seeing many farms in the area with black fences, I bought three 5-gallon buckets of black fence paint and went to work.
I spent 14 ½ hours over three days to paint the entire fence. The outside was easy as there was no wire. But painting the inside, without painting the wire, took a paint roller, a 4” brush and a lot of patience. The finished product looks amazing if I do say so myself.
Devoting the day to self-care activities has been a great idea.
First thing in the morning, the sky was overcast, and it was a little cool. Not exactly an ideal “work on the yard day.” It seemed like it was going to rain any minute. But as the morning progressed, the clouds broke, and the sun began to peek through. For it was just little flashes, then the entire sky was lit up. The only remaining traces of the rain were little puffy clouds occasionally floating across the blue spring sky.
And the temperature got up to the mid-seventies.
This was warm enough that my shorts and tee-shirt no longer needed a sweatshirt over them. It was ideal lawn mowing weather. As the sun began to set, I noticed the heat from the engine on my leg as I would spin the tractor around. It’s funny what you can notice when you are “in the moment.”
My rescue beagle is watching me from her large pillow in the living room.
She agrees that this has been a “clear the cobwebs” day. She reminded me that my wife and I took her on a long walk around the property. If she is outside of our fenced-in backyard, she stays on a leash. Two years ago, she got loose, dragging her leash over the mountain into the next valley. We finally found her on a dirt road, over a mile from our home.
It was several hours before we realized she had been shot.
She spent the next five days in the emergency Vet hospital. She had surgery to repair 11 holes in her small intestine from the 22-caliber pellet. When we went to pick her up Friday to take her home, Sissy Spacek was in the waiting room. She engaged us by saying “we will do anything for our animals, won’t we?” My wife and I enjoyed a few minutes talking with Sissy, but our dog was saying “come on, I want to go home.”
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The weather tomorrow is expected to be cloudier and possibly wet.
Having a second day off in a row, our plan is to work outside if possible, putting a solar-powered spotlight next to our parking area. With no streetlights, our property can be very dark between 4 AM and 6 AM. Having a motion sensor to turn on lighting near the cars will give my daughter (and me) a clearer path out to the cars.
And we won’t worry so much about startling a bear as we go to our vehicles in the dark.
Hitting my keys against my metal coffee mug when I walk out into the dark to go to my truck, I am not worried about bears that know I am there. They will skedaddle quickly if they know a human is coming. My concern is startling a bear, where it feels cornered. This often does not end well for the human involved (or the bear, once it is caught)
So, despite major depressive disorder and Covid 19, I am going to focus on day two of “shaking out the cobwebs.”
My concealed depression is written under the alias “Depression is not my boss.” I have certifications in SMART Recovery and am a Global Career Development Facilitator.
Last year, I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder.