Sunday and Monday were the first two days my wife and I have ever spent alone on my parents’ farm. It was very nice – relaxing and peaceful with the natural sounds of the geese, frogs, horse, cattle, dog and, of course, the unnatural sound of the TV we impose on the serenity.
It was a glimpse of what retirement might be like many years down the road, although the geography will likely be different. It had a unique feel to it atypical for us, and a very good one at that.
Then Linda had to return to Louisville for her responsibilities the remainder of the week. As I stood on top of the hill in the yard, I took a break from throwing the Frisbee to the dog and watched as Linda drove down the hill, onto the country road and made her way toward town – the start of the 90 mile journey home. My heart sunk a little as I watched because it felt like a little piece of me was leaving.
Normally, I welcome time alone. This time it got to me. I thought about what it might be like to have no choice but to be alone on this farm or at my home in Louisville. I imagined that unthinkable future time when one of my parents will face waking up daily without the other inseparable half present.
The issue isn’t the geography of where one might be alone, but that one might be alone. How do you cope with that reality when life imposes such an unwanted silence?
The Genesis creation account says “it is not good for man to be alone.” Some choose to be alone and that is their prerogative. Many have their lifelong companions torn from them long before either is ready. Others long not to be alone, but struggle to find that one special soul with whom to connect for life.
Even though I may temporarily be alone this week, I know I have my life partner waiting for me when I return to Louisville. For that… no, for her, I am eternally thankful.
Leap year lesson #125 is It is not good for man to be alone.