Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Choosing Effort: Shoveling at 4:30 a.m.

Why did I shovel my drive way at 4:30a, filled with the fear of pissing off my neighbors as the dull blade scraped across rough concrete breaking the silence of early morning, you ask?

I mean I certainly didn’t need to. What appears to be a little more than two inches is definitely no match for either of our cars, and the driveway isn’t really steep enough to cause any issues with getting up it. In addition, Amanda’s school called off and I can work from home, so we really don’t need to leave the house today. And it’s Missouri. We’ll heat up above 32 this week, and it will all be melted by Friday. So, why, indeed?

Well, there are actually a few reasons.

First, the kids were getting dropped off in the morning, and I didn’t want them to have to walk through the snow to get into the house. That may sound pretty caring, like I am concerned for the warmth of their little tootsies, but I can assure you it is less altruistic than that. Have you seen a 5 year old and an 8 year old walk in the snow? It’s never just walking. As soon as the first snow boot hits the fluffy white flakes of good-times and magic, the bitter dichotomy of ecstasy and pain would descend upon that moment like Dionysus showing up to a party on a three day wine bender. It would only be a matter of time before someone would end up with icy tears and a face full of snow. Hell, even with the shoveled drive way that happened, but at least they didn’t track it through our clean house.

More importantly, it is the example I am trying to set for the kids. I want them to understand life, want them to realize life isn’t all snowball fights and snow-angels. I want them to know that their step-dad believes in hardwork, and, through my example, I am hoping they adopt the same philosophy. Not now, not when they are teenagers, necessarily, but when they are on their own trying to figure it all out. I want them to think back to these moments and allow them to be their guide. I want them to take pride in their property, as they have seen me and their mom showing our pride by keeping the house clean, the lawn mowed (okay, I have a lawn dude, but still…I work hard to pay him J), the and driveway shoveled. I want them to know that there was an easier way, a lazy way, to deal with this little snow storm, but I chose to deal with it by putting forth a little effort; I chose to deal with it the right way. And they need that. They need those examples because the car they were dropped off in was still covered and looked like Hailey’s Comet as it sped away.

Lastly, I would be lying if I didn’t say I find it somewhat cathartic, despite the fear of waking the neighbors. The silence of early morning. The snow glistening under a tired streetlamp. The cold air making nose run and cheeks rosy. The rhythm of the scrape and step. The sense of accomplishment as something that was once covered in snow is now clean. 

No comments:

Post a Comment