Life Rolls On

I didn’t have a full weekend off from work, only Sunday, because I had to go in Saturday to make up for Thursday when i had to stay home with a critically ill chicken. I nursed her back from the brink of death only for her to give up, refusing to eat or drink further. Now im having an ongoing argument with this chicken on whether she’s going to drink apple cider vinegar water and coconut oil and she thinks absolutely, unequivocally “no” so i spend hours of my Sunday pinning her to the floor and holding a spoon of liquid under her beak, negotiating some semblance of drinking while she flings the spoon at me and smears poop on my foot. Im meant to be mowing the lawn and using the internet at my friend’s homestead to upload the final copy of my third book for formatting, but i havent even finished my final read through for grammatical errors nor have i fetched the mower, because ive been here fighting with this chicken, entertaining every possibility from her being egg bound to an intestinal infection. I have been through it with this chicken, including an epson salt bath in the sink and going up in there with a finger coated in coconut oil looking for a stuck egg. Its not looking fantastic, prognosis wise. This reality has not kept me from trying. Its not over until its over. Needless to say, i did not get a lot of other stuff done this week. So Sunday i achieved laundry and kept the sick chicken alive for another day. I didnt cook or pickle any of the food i was supposed to cook or pickle. I didnt wash the dishes. I did clean and refill the chicken water dispenser because i was concerned the poop they deposit in and on it may have been a source of the problem with the chicken living in the house right now and i wanted to make sure the others stayed healthy. Around 7:45 pm i was finishing up the evening chores when i noticed the recent weeks of sporadic rain had fed the grasses and thistles in the dog run in an epic way and the jungle in there was now shoulder height to the dogs. It was borderline uninhabitable. I couldnt leave it like that if i expected to put them outside in the dog run while i worked tomorrow. It had literally just rained an hour ago. It was not the time to mow. The time to mow would have been when the grass was dry this morning. There was no use in wasting waning daylight talking about it. It would have to be done. I put a battery in the mower and dragged it from the shed. I ran around the dog run with a headphone in one ear and my other listening for a change in the noise of the mower so i knew when to turn it on its side and use a stick to scrape the wet thistle and grass gunk out from underneath the mower. The mosquitos were eating me alive and Cashew was forever challenging the mower to a duel as if it was some sentient being that could be bested in battle. I kept finding these fat poisonous mushrooms in amongst the thistles. When the blade would slice into them the insides were beige with a sickening bluish tint to them. All i could think about was how much trouble we would be in if Cashew found and ate one of these while i was at work two towns away. Cashew was not to be trusted with poisonous mushrooms. I tried to keep them whole and chucked them all over the fence, away from her reach. As i ran around the dog run, swatting wildly at mosquitos, my intention was to mow the front half of the dog run so that they at least had some relief from the chigger laden tall grass and pokey thistle area. Then i found some yucca and prickly pear cactus that had to go. Pretty soon i had mowed more than half the dog run. I switched batteries and attempted to finish mowing the whole thing, save for the sloppy edges against the fence. I was in a time crunch and working against fading daylight so i didnt bother with them. With one quarter of the dog run left to mow i heard metal spinning against metal and ordered the dogs away as i took my fingers off the button and let the blades spin to a stop. I turned the mower over and realized the gunk had caused the blades to loosen quite a bit and i would need a wrench to tighten them. There wasnt any time to raise my hands to the heavens and ask all sorts of self involved questions about why my life couldnt be easier and things couldnt go more according to plan. I walked to the house, fetched a wrench, tightened the mower blades, turned the mower back over, pushed the button down, and mowed the rest of the dog run while holding the wrench that had fixed the problem.

Life rolls on, with or without you. I could have spent time doing research or trying to find a mower repair man, lamenting my bad luck, or i could just choose to try something and see if it works. I broke the mower. I fixed the mower. I finished using the mower.

I keep thinking, if i can just get this chicken to do A, B, C, and D, she’ll live and recover nicely. i can put her back in the chicken pen with the others, and i wont have to dig a chicken sized hole in the rock at the end of the week. But it is out of my hands. The outcome is not decided by me. Life will roll on whether the chicken lives or dies, whether the 200 year old oak trees succumbs to oak wilt or not. Despite my fervent belief that i can control everything i set my mind to, things break, beings expire…Time marches on with indifference. You can spend time lamenting the misfortune or grab a wrench and roll with what God has planned.

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