Shoveling A Lot

Today was the first time I shoveled this year.

My husband gallantly handled the storm last Friday all on his own while I got caught in a whirlwind of multitasking.  When I calmed down enough to stop, I made a promise not to leave him out in the cold on his own anymore – and today I kept my word.

It was a light snow.  The kind that makes you almost like shoveling.  The kind that’s good for moving and thinking.

With Ken clearing one end, and me at the other (we have a horseshoe driveway), and Briggs away at daycare, it felt like old times.  Like when we first bought the house and we were excited to do all of those homeowner things (like shoveling our drive), together.

By the time I finished my side Ken was clearing out our mailbox.

“This is like before we had Briggs,” I said.

“Yeah,” he laughed.  “Did you miss it?”

“Maybe a little,” I said, before leaning in and finding a way to give him a quick kiss under all that white stuff.

Later on, after I’d ventured out to get Briggs and we were all warm together getting supper ready, I started daydreaming about our late afternoon shovel.

“You know all that work you’ve been doing with our family tree?” I asked Ken, while mixing a batter for zucchini fritters.

“Yeah,” he said.

“Just got me thinking.  I know we don’t love to shovel or anything, but all that tracing back to our grandparents, and their parents, and their parents, parents.  There are just so many stories stacked upon stories of low-wages, boarding houses, early deaths, struggle, sacrifice, struggle, sacrifice…”

“Okay…”

“And, you know how I still sometimes get caught up in worry?  About money.  About providing – about any of this (I whirl my rubber spatula around) all of this, being enough…”

“Yeah…”

“Well the term ‘lot in life,’ just popped into my head.  I’ve always read that as negative.  Like, it’s just ‘your lot in life.’  But, I don’t know, when I really think about the whole story of us, and how right now, you and me, and Briggs – how we actually have a literal lot in life.  And on top of that, a LOT in life.  It’s just kind of overwhelming.  And…I think, they’d be proud.”

“Our ancestors?”

“Yeah,” I said. “Of our lot.”

“Me, too,” Ken replied.

And with that, no one felt too badly going back out to shovel.

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