Cancer and commitment

The garden post that I just put up is not complete. I just realized that as I went out to the garage to smoke my pipe.

Our old pickup is filled to the brim with all manner of sticks, cuttings, stalks, and such that Joan (JKK) pulled from the garden and loaded into the pickup for an eventual trip to the compost pile at the dump. She did all of that without complaint or help from me or anyone else.

Joan’s commitment to her garden is not to be believed. Her labor is like that of a farm worker. All by hand. Stoop labor. She orders compost by the yard, has it dumped on our driveway and lugs it back to the garden with a 30-year old wheelbarrow. Then she spreads it shovel by shovel to enrich the soil that will produce her flowers.

Less than two years ago, cancer attacked Joan. It was colon/rectal cancer. The cure was chemotherapy and radiation of every organ below her pelvis. Both occurred at the same time. The skin on her abdomen turned red, burned and blistered. Internally, the radiation fried most of what it touched. Thankfully, and just several days ago, the doctors announced that the very nasty burn spot in her bowels had finally healed.

And still she gardens, filling up an old pickup all by herself and by hand. JKK is one tough old broad. Cancer and commitment.



3 responses

  1. Tough old broad for a tough old coot. You two make an excellent pair. And good for JKK for her successful fight with cancer.

    As to composting, there’s no need to buy, or haul away. You can make your own composter; here’s just one example.

    Eric Hines

  2. E.,

    Give me a break. That tough old broad will not get off my ass about doing precisely what you suggest despite the fact that I love to drive to the dump in my pick-me-up. I roll my T-shirt sleeves up, tuck a pack of cigs (just for show) therein, put the gun rack back up, mount the bolt action .22 squirrel gun, and keep the gear as low as possible causing the short block six to roar. Now, you want me to give that up? PLEEZE.

    All the best.


  3. Nothing to give up there, judge.

    Build her the composter. Then, with the time you save for both of you with that, you can do all of that in a slightly different, and more appropriate, venue: you driving, with your arm dangling out driver’s side window, she with her hair piled high, sitting on the passenger side window sill, as you scoop the loop.

    Lincoln and Omaha have loops to be scooped, yes? Every mid-western town has a loop….

    I can see the headlines, now, as the town cop busts the Federal judge for…loitering? drag racing? being a pest?

    Eric Hines

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