The weekend at Shady Acres has held so many happy moments. The table is down now, and the chairs are back to where they belong. I took every chance I got to grab a wink of sleep this weekend, and we made it through! What a blessing our adult children are to Certain Man and me.
And now, for a story from the weekend.
On Saturday, I realized that I needed to pick up a prescription for Certain Man and then grab some lemons for lemonade. It was the middle of the afternoon, and people were pretty much scattered, doing what they wanted to do. We had company coming for supper at 6:30, and I realized very late that I also needed to order the refills for Our Girl Audrey and Blind Linda so that I could pick them up by 3:00 when the trusty Pill Box Pharmacy closed. I called the six scripts in, speaking to the pharmacist himself, just to be clear on what was expected, and then flew about the kitchen, loading the dishwasher, ordering the usual Saturday lunch for the ladies since the rest of the family had brunch and were not expecting me to provide it.
I procured the lunch, quickly fed the ladies, and then saw, to my dismay, that Certain Man was traversing around the deck and front lawn with his walker. At my gentle remonstrance, he said that he was just fine, in fact did better when he could do something. Since it looked like he was going to work on some issues with his one bird feeder, and I was seriously running out of time, I decided to leave him to his folly and grabbed the stuff I needed and headed out to my trusty mini van.
Certain Man had bought a lovely new wagon for his beloved granddaughter for her fourth birthday, and it had been greatly exclaimed over and brought into the house (even though it was too large an outdoor toy for indoor use!) and then it had been returned to the garage where it had been lodged in the rainstorm that passed through the night before. Before I left to pick up the ladies’ lunches, I had carefully taken the wagon and parked it out in the pavilion so that no one would run over it. When I came back home from that, I had carefully closed the garage door, as is Certain Man’s expressed desire for all persons to do every single time. This is because the barn cats like to come inside when the door is up to “mark territory” causing no end of loud protests, not only from Certain Man, but also all the inhabitants of the house. When a male feline decides that the garage is included in his domain, it is not a welcoming aura that rises up to greet arriving family and friends. Therefore, I truly make it a practice to close the door.
With everything going on, the time had been slipping away, and it was almost 2:30 when I finally was in our mini-van, ready to go. I pushed the button to open the garage door, fastened the seat belt and started the engine, turned on the headlights, adjusted the seat and began easing the van out of the garage.
CRUNCH!!! Rumble, rumble!!! I stopped immediately, but something continued to rumble a bit. I eased forward and leaped out of the driver’s seat, certain that someone had decided to ride the wagon during my short venture inside. I was positive that I would see Love Bug’s beautiful new wagon, crumpled upon the driveway directly behind the garage door.
There was nothing there. At all!
I knew that I had hit something. I couldn’t figure out. I peered about, puzzled, even tried to see if something was under the van. Wait! What was wrong with my garage door? It was hanging at a very strange angle. Oh, no! I must have caught the garage door with the luggage carrier on top of the mini-van. My heart sank as I saw that it looked pretty out of commission. It was up, though, so I backed the van out of the garage and tried to close it. It went about a foot, caught on something, ground away and jiggled and shook, so I quickly stopped it, and put it back up. Then tried again, just to make sure that it hadn’t fixed itself. It hadn’t.
For crying out loud. I was late, my garage door was broken, my husband was gallivanting around the front yard with his walker and I was so irritated with myself. I HAD to go get the meds, but I also had to tell Certain Man why the garage door wouldn’t go down. And then he was going to try to fix it. I know this man. I was sure he was going to try to fix it. And I should help him. But I was late. I looked at that miserable old garage door and I felt like my spirit was wailing. But I had to tell him.
I stopped the car. I climbed out, and went back into the garage, up the ramp, through the entryway and out the back door to the side deck. I saw Certain Man working on his bird feeder.
“Uh, Sweetheart, I kinda broke the garage door.”
“You did what?”
“The garage door. I kinda backed into it. It seems like it’s been going up slower and slower, and I guess I just didn’t think and backed out before it was all the way up.”
Now that sounds really lame when I read it, but the truth is, the garage door HAS been going up slower and slower for some reason. Usually I remember, and give it some time, but I just didn’t think this time.
Certain Man didn’t shout or anything. He got that grin on his face that he gets sometimes when his wife does something really stupid. He took his walker around the end of the deck that is towards the road, and came through the sun room, out the other side, and then into the entryway, out into the garage, and down the ramp. Grinning the whole time.
I went out and got back into my van. I shut the door, but I rolled down the window.
“Sweetheart,” I said, and I heard the pleading in my voice. “I really need to go, but do you want me to do something?”
He stood under the door and looked it up and down, then said, “Yeah, just try to put it down.”
So I pushed the button and it went about a foot, caught on something, ground away and jiggled and shook, and he waved his hand in my direction that meant “stop it” so I stopped it, and then put it back up. “Do it again,” he said, so I did, and he grabbed ahold of the one side and pulled it down past where it was catching. When it was about half way down he waved his hand under the descending door to indicate that I was to stop it again, and when I did, he leaned his weight upon it and gave it a mighty shove. I was almost frantic, because I was sure all that jarring about couldn’t be good for his poor knee, but he did it another time or two and then waved under the door again that I was to put it back up. So I did, and went right up almost as good as new.
“Put it down again,” he ordered. So I put it down again, and there was a few more banging noises where he put some convincing pressure upon something, and then said, “Try it again.”
And this time it went up, pretty as you please, and then down again, pretty as you please. He grinned at me through the windows in the door and made motions that made me know that I was to get on my way.
And so I did. Flew into the pharmacy with his prescription, went down to Pill Box, where my prescriptions weren’t ready and they offered to deliver them, then scrambled over to Wal-Mart to get the lemons I needed, stopped at Wal-Greens for Certain Man’s now finished prescription, and then went hurriedly back to Shawnee Road, where my garage door opened smoothly up to receive me safely home less than an hour after I had left.
And I got ready for supper guests with lots of good help from my family, and we had a lovely evening together.
And believe me, when I went to bed last night, I slept the slumber of the very, very tired. But even that is a blessing, I’ve discovered. It is far better than restless insomnia.
And that’s the news from Shady Acres, where the quietness tonight feels peaceful, yes, but it is not without a sad missing of the many feet that have pounded through this house the last four days.
My heart gives grateful praise for the beloved family that God has given Certain man and me. How very blessed we are!