Yesterday was a difficult day, I had to call into work due to the road conditions and not recently having to drive in blinding snow “squalls” and white outs in over 25 years. I spent the entire day shoveling my walkway to my front door, steps, front porch even though the front door cant be used as it is broken, the mail slot is still there. “Mom, why are you shoveling that walk way out to the street and the stairs and throwing salt there when we don’t even use that door?” My reply, “Well we have a mail carrier that works hard through these conditions every day walking through the knee deep snow to deliver our mail up our stairs. Why not make it just a little less grueling on them and throw the salt to they don’t get hurt or slip on our stairs just to get our mail to us”. “Mom isn’t that their job anyway? why do we have to do that, we’re not delivering the mail”? I paused for a moment thinking of an answer as I was walking to the back door and shoveling the tiny one car short driveway. More taps on the window, “Mother! What are you doing THAT for? You park your car in the garage and you know its just going to snow again tomorrow and the next. Why do shovel now then again and again.”? I just gave my children a thumbs up letting them know Mom’s ok and I’ll be done in a few minutes.
3 hours later after shoveling the back deck, walkway to the garage and the driveway into the garage and salting what i had left the tiny drive out from the back door, I knew I had done enough and while my middle child had to help me physically up the stairs, pull my parka off, they both asked me, ” Mom why after you worked all day did you spend 3 more hours shoveling the snow and putting that stuff down? You know it’s going to keep snowing tonight and into tomorrow all day right.”
I had them sit down as I explained another Life Lesson I’ve learned: These 2 pictures of the snow one picture was this morning before I went to work (after I had shoveled and salted) and when I looked at first up the road there had been not one that traveled down that road yet, no plows,salt truck nothing to make my journey a little easier. So when I reached my garage I looked back and saw my foot prints and then saw where I had shoveled the snow to make my exit a little bit easier. And as I passed by my tiny drive/pull in area I thought, “Now my children won’t have to struggle so much being that they aren’t used to this weather yet, now they can walk to the end of that driveway and wait for the bus for school.
And passing the front door I thought, now the mail carrier wont have to overwork themselves delivering at least our mail. Its the small things in life that I notice and appreciate. Sure the mail carriers get paid to deliver mail, sure my 4 wheel drive can take me over that fluffy snow. But what about those that don’t know how to travel on a place that has no path for them to follow first? What if the little thoughtful things we do for someone else could just make a small difference in that ones life’s. Too many times we miss opportunities to “pay it forward” in many different ways and then we begin to take life and the gift of life for granted. Henceforth, creating more of those entitled generations we talk about. My son now see’s me shoveling and he just wants to run and help even after a rough day at school or the after school sports. Most days I let him help me, but some days this mommy needs to just be alone with her thoughts and shovel so that I can so personal appreciation even for my children’s new attitudes and I enjoy being able to learn these lessons through the most simplistic ways.
The other picture here:
Is where I slid into the ditch (before the spin out into oncoming traffic the following day, while trying to get to work to provide for my children) When the snow cleared a few days later I could not believe the name of the corner/ ditch where I slid into….Victory Corner! When you have come from some of the lowest pits, deepest ditches like myself, you learn to appreciate and learn that life is not about the all mighty dollar, no, you learn that when you come out of that ditch/pit/abuse/addiction/etc……There is VICTORY at the corner when you come out! But you have to have a strong heart, strong mind, strong spirit to get yourself out and when you do, encourage someone else that they can make it, even though there is no laid out path and you’ll have to work hard to make a path, know you are helping someone by creating at least a basic path to follow so they wont have to end up in the ditch because there will be faint tire marks for them to follow if they are willing to listen and observe.