How Did He Do It?

My admiration for Dad has grown since his death.

To help Mom, I took over the yard work.

Oh my…he was more man in his later years than I can ever hope to be.

How did he do all he did?

I remember, as a child, he would go into work early in the morning and return home about 3 in the afternoon.  Then he would begin yard work – cutting grass, clipping hedges, raking leaves, repairing, painting, working the garden, working on the car, helping a neighbor….

Mom would call him to supper and he would wash off enough to be presentable at the table and, after he ate, if there was enough daylight, he would return to work more outside.

When darkness halted his outside activities, he would head inside, shower and help Mom with any housework she had not yet completed – or help us with homework – before settling down, relaxing, and watching a little TV before bedtime.

He was like the Eveready Energizer Bunny, going long after the others had worn out. (Years ago he helped us move. After working hours loading the U-Haul truck, Hubby asked, “Dad, do you need to rest?” “No, I’m fine,” was his reply.  Hubby said, “Well, I need to.”)

It was only a few years ago that he slowed down and allowed someone to help him with yard work.  His health further declined after a heart attack last year and he was no longer able to do the work he once did.

But, he continued to do what he could to keep his yard looking nice, neat and cared for – even if that was nothing more than picking up sticks.

So far this Spring I’ve cut the grass three times. My current project is the hedges that encircle the yard and the preparation of the garden.

I’m not sure what energized Dad and enabled him to do all he did.  At the end of a day of physical labor, I shake my head and think, “How did he do it?!?

I think I need new batteries.

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