It’s likely I’ll never know exactly why my husband left me. He did tell me that having fewer years ahead of him than he has behind him compelled him to start seeking something that’s been missing all his life. It’s the “greener grass” syndrome, I suppose. Sure, he had grass, but how could he be certain it was the best grass possible, unless he gave the world one more look?
Since he left, I’ve had the “grass is greener” crap stuck in my head. Then, today, in between recipes, requests for me to copy and paste things, and pictures of kittens with clever quips, I saw this in my Facebook feed: “The grass is greener where you water it.”
“Yes!” I responded, as if whoever posted it could hear me.
I’ll be the first to admit our grass had gotten pretty brown in places. But it wasn’t dead, we simply hadn’t watered it in a very long time. Sure, we would’ve had to walk to a river, several miles away, multiple times a day, initially. But, eventually, we could’ve dug a well, then saved our money until we could afford a lawn care service or installed pipes and sprinklers to help us maintain it. We could have planted some stronger types of grass to help fill in the bare spots and choke out the weeds. We could have required our boys to help more often and make it easier on us to mow and tend our lawn, instead of putting it off because the kids were whiny or the weather was too hot or we were tired or we lied to ourselves and said, “who cares what the lawn looks like.”
You know I could brainstorm this problem all day long and never run out of ideas for watering our grass. But my ability to see the potential in our situation does me no good if he can’t see it too. That, my friends, is a special kind of hell.
Even worse, I have no pithy point to summarize this ginormous thought bubble I’ve shared here. I keep waiting for my life’s narrator to make the connection for me, point out how I can make something out of something I’m not allowed to make anymore. Find the hidden blessing in the life not lived, the project unfinished, the potential not realized. But, so far, I’ve got nothing. I’m making nothing of it and I have to be okay with that. For now.
* After seeing just the phrase “The grass is greener where you water it,” I Googled that, so I could find its context and give credit to the author. I found it in this post where it was attributed to Neil Barringham, an inclusion worker (in the mental health and disability fields) in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.