On caregivers, faith, family, and writing…

It’s been an emotional week that started Sunday night with the long awaited phone call telling me that Mom had died peacefully in her sleep. Since then I have helped make plans, contacted friends and relatives, and responded to an overwhelming outpouring of love and support. I’ve posted a couple of tributes, and I’m sure there will be more as I work through my feelings about her life and her death, but this morning I thought I’d share something a little lighter.

Yesterday morning I needed a bit of a break from the intensity, so I went outside and picked up trash. I don’t think any of the prior owners of this property had their trash picked up. Instead they burned or buried it, and every time it rains or the wind blows away the top layer of dust, bits of broken glass, rusted cans, and pieces of plastic appear. As I filled my bucket with the detritus of people I didn’t know, and as I got dirt under my fingernails, I thought about the differences between Mom and me. She was a city girl who was born and raised in the country, and I apparently am right the opposite. I wrote a little about those differences in my recent post about planting a garden, but there are lots more. Here are a few of them.

Ten ways to tell a city girl is becoming a country girl:

10. She no longer screams when she finds a bug crawling up her arm. She may jump and flail her arms, but no screaming.

9. She has seen an owl, a fox, and a skunk in close proximity to her house, and none has been in a cage.

8. She has deer meat in her freezer, and she knows what to do with it.

7. She has work jeans, dress jeans and every day jeans.

6. She knows what poison ivy looks like – and feels like.

5. She knows that, in spite of what Nancy Sinatra said, boots were made for working, not walking.

4. She recognizes the call of a hawk and the bark of a squirrel.

3. She knows how to back a lawn tractor out of a hole.

2. When she washes her hands, real dirt comes off.

1. She has learned there is life after Wal-Mart.



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