as what i consider to be an independent woman, i HATE when i can not do something. hate it hate it hate it. having a husband, i have been exempt from most things that require heavy lifting or physical prowess for some time now, but every once in a while i still want to do something like put a cabinet together or move some furniture just to prove to myself that i can--that somewhere in this doting wife lives the independent woman i was before i met bryan.
well, bryan works at a power station and every spring and every fall they take all the power producing units offline to do repairs, maintenance, what have you. this means that he has only had 3 days off since the beginning of march, and typically he leaves for work right around 7am and gets home around 8ish, even on weekends. it sucks.
during this time, of course, the grass has started to grow. and grow. and grow. and no one has cut it because my hands swell when i use the lawnmower (i know this from heredity--my mom has the same problem, and from the 5 minutes of my life that bryan let me push the lawnmower around once). in the past few days, though, i have felt increasingly guilty about the state of our yard, seeing all my neighbors out in theirs' planting flowers and cutting grass and weed eating... you know, the normal stuff homeowners do when spring comes.
this all came to a head yesterday, the most gorgeous day yet, when there was really no excuse for me NOT to be out there tending to the yard. yes, i had craploads of laundry to do and furniture delivery people coming, but still. so i decided that today i would just suck it up and mow the lawn. if my hands swelled, i'd stop, but i'd try to toughen up and push through and at least get the front portion of our yard looking presentable.
so i read the paper, drink my coffee, and finally decide it's time. i put on a t-shirt, jeans, hat, sneakers... out to the garage i go. i get the lawnmower out, read the directions on the handle.
check oil. check.
check gas. check.
push primer button 3 times. check.
hold down bar next to handle. check.
pull starter cord 1-3 times to start mower. check. -ish.
nothing happens. a little swirling around of the motor to mock me, sure. but no giant roar of a running lawnmower. so i'm frustrated, but comfort myself in the fact that this is the first time i've ever tried to start a lawnmower, so it might take a couple times to get it going. and luckily the directions tell me to repeat steps 3-5 if it doesn't start. so at least i'm not the only person in the world who has to try more than once.
so i try again.
at this point i'm pissed. i'm breathing hard and little beads of sweat are starting to break out on my forehead under my hat because i am pulling that damn cord with all my might! of course, it doesn't help that my right arm is totally useless from arthritis damage, so my pulls are weak, and i try a few times to hold the bar down with my right hand and pull the cord with my left, but every time i pull, the lawnmower just moves with the cord. ARG!!!
so i call bryan. what's the trick, i ask? pull it hard and fast. uh huh. i think i'm doing that but am getting the impression that lydia's "hard/fast pull" is not adequate for the requirements of this lawnmower's engine.
so he tells me it's alright and as i'm talking to him all i can think is, have i really become the girl who, were i not married, couldn't even cut her own grass?! so i get off the phone and am determined i'm going to start this freaking lawnmower.
because i am embarassed for my neighbors (who are of course out in their yards as well) to see that i am incapable of starting the lawnmower, i pull it inside the garage to have my little "me vs. mower" battle in private.
i try again.
and maybe 3 more times until finally, i admit defeat. and come inside to blog about it.
so that's where i stand now. me: 0, lawnmower: 9. my arm is tired and my confidence shot, and my grass waving at me in a "nanny nanny boo boo" sort of way.
all i can say is, it's a good thing i've got a husband, and where can i find some kid to cut my grass?