Over the last year I have been trying to learn insight to myself. I found a Facebook page for photography, which is an interest of mine. After I took my first photo challenge I read the rules of the group. One of the rules stated I should have a blog. Are you serious? Write a blog page, I don’t write anything! But I took up the challenge and started this blog on WordPress. What will I write about? Will it be interesting, or will I be just wasting sheets of e-paper.
As I set up my blog I started exploring the writings of others on WordPress. I came across a young lady who wrote about her photography, agriculture and falling in love and I was hooked! The holy trifecta of interests for me! I followed her links and explored other links to find some interesting sites and people. I have found and follow several people writings about their photography, their farm life and their relationships with their spouse and family. Yes, I look forward to their postings. This young lady also got me to reopen my Twitter account and now follow her and her husband. Now I don’t get Twitter, but I will give it a try and see if there is any value to my life. Than one day she posted a daily inspiration on Twitter to the followers of the Housewives of Rural America. I loved it, but after 3 days of thinking I started to disagree with the message of inspiration. It was too optimistic and a utopian love statement of marriage. What about real life?
I come from a long line of marriages. Me and my wife have been married 33 and a half years, over half way to 65 years. My Mom and Dad were married almost 39 years until cancer took her life. My Grandparents were married 42 years before my grandpa died. Yes, “It was until death do us part.” But we are the lucky ones. I have had friends get divorced. Some with a short marriage and others after a long marriage. And the questions in my mind are, “Why couldn’t they fix it?” “Why wasn’t it worth fixing?” “Did they come from the wrong school of thoughts?” So I started thinking of marriage in farming terms.
When we buy a new piece of equipment we do all the preventive maintenance possible. We change the oil, check the belts and hoses and grease all the zerts to keep the equipment moving smooth and reducing wear. We drive the equipment carefully and cautiously to prevent damage and break downs. Guess what, it still breaks down! Our marriages are the same. We can do all the preventive maintenances and we still have a break down. The big question is, “Is it worth fixing?” Most of the time the answer is yes, it wasn’t that big of a break down. What if it was a big break down? Are we still willing to invest time and money into the repairs? Will it keep us going for the season or many more seasons to come?
There are horrible things that happen on the farm. That tractor or combine will catch fire and burn. In the same way we may have to bury our spouse because of a farming accident. My brother-in law was a cautious farmer. One day checking on room in a silo, he climbed the silo and was over come with the silo gas and died. He did everything right, and it still cost him his life.
Equipment and metals fatigue and will not hold its structure causing sprockets to miss align and throw chains. My Dad and Uncle had a Heston haybine. They bought it used at an auction. That haybine had cut many acres. One year they had the engine blow a hole in the side of the block. Yes it was worth replacing the engine. As time went by the metal started to fatigue. The idler sprocket wouldn’t hold its place and it started throwing chains. It seemed every round we were stopping it slip the chain back on. Then one day they made the decision to scrap the haybine. What about our marriages, are they fatigued and throwing chains? Is it worth fixing or should we send it for scrap?
I have told some people after watching some of my friends divorce what really eats at my soul. Why would a woman scrap her marriage so she can cut her income and live in poverty, raise the children by herself and eat a lot of mac & cheese to make it all come together. How fatigued is her soul, and how lonely and unloved she must feel when she chooses mac & cheese over her husband.
But don’t dispair, there might be someone in your life that will find you at the scrap yard. A while ago my Dad was telling me about a tractor he found at a junk yard. He stated with all the options on that tractor he thought is was worth buying and bringing back to life. What was wrong? It had a blown engine. The last owner scraped the tractor because it wasn’t worth fixing. My Dad thought it was worth fixing and he would have given it a paint job. He didn’t buy the tractor, he said he had too many projects to finish, but he still thought it was a good buy.
65 years of marriage is an awesome goal! But some where along the way real life will get in the way. Horrible accidents happen on the farm! Your marriage may become fatigued and ready for scrap! And for many of us is it worth fixing?