Friday, June 28, 2013

Fear: A Stream of Consciousness

The last year was tough for my family.  My uncle became ill suddenly and passed away within 5 months of diagnosis.  We were very close and his illness and death has taken a toll on me and my family.  The day my uncle passed away, my husband was having emergency surgery.  It was a difficult emotional period.

I have always had issues with anxiety, but I think after going through something like our family went through the last year you spend a lot of time wondering what the next BAD thing will be.  You don't want to let yourself get excited about something or be happy for fear it can be taken away again.  You realize how fragile and delicate life is and yes, you appreciate it more but you also realize how quickly things can change.  Life can change on a dime.

Jason is an amazing father, he ALWAYS puts the girls and I first.

Lately I have been living in constant fear of something happening to my husband.  I am probably driving him a little nuts with all my warnings and concerns.  My husband is an arborist, a tree expert.  He used to climb trees and prune them and take out dead branches to keep trees healthy and to ensure the safety of people walking under the trees.  He still does that when there are crazy storms.  I am proud that my husband braves all kinds of weather conditions and has access to roads when others don't so that he can get downed trees off of powerlines.  But it also scares me that the roads are unsafe, the conditions he works in are unsafe.  I pray for his safety at those times constantly.

A bigger part of my husband's job is to scout large properties like golf courses and country clubs, universities and sculpture gardens, arboretums and parks, and make recommendations.  He spends much of his time walking properties, examining plants, taking photos and writing reports.  He spends some of his time releasing beneficial insects, using equipment to loosen and invigorate soil around plant roots, writing watering programs and pruning and shaping shrubs and small trees.  But, he spends 10-20% of his time using pesticides to kill insects that are eating up foliage, herbicides to kill weeds, fungicides to kill fungi and fertilizers to make the soil nutrient-rich for the plants and trees.  This makes me extremely nervous.  We've discussed it and he's admitted that he doesn't like doing it, but that he loves his industry and this is the kinds of jobs that are available.  He's tried sales and the stress of quotas and numbers and formulas, he feels cause stress on his body that are as detrimental as spraying chemicals.  He always says he could never handle working in an office all day, he NEEDS to be outside.  I know I am making him crazy mentioning this all the time and how scared it makes me.

I love my husband.

Jason has always been there for me.  It is uncanny how he knows what I need and how he balances me out.  What concerns me, he takes in stride and offers a new perspective on; and what concerns him, I can offer a different perspective on.  This September will be 20 years since our first date and next month will be 21 years since we first met.  It's been 23 years since I used to notice him at the gas station he worked in with his long blond hair and bad boy attitude.  We have grown together in ways I never would have imagined.  We share a love of yoga, photography and craft beer.  He is interested in what we are learning in homeschooling and often picks up adult non-fiction books on the topics we are learning about so he can be part of the discussion.  I know he is a little uncomfortable because he didn't finish college, but honestly I don't know anyone who values education more or who challenges themselves more than Jason does...his reading choices are almost always classics or non-fiction and he seeks out people who are scholars on topics that interest him to discuss and learn more.

Jason has always encouraged me to do anything I wanted and he's always supported my dreams.  I feel bad that he has to work so hard for our family while I just work part-time and homeschool, but he says it gives him a sense of pride to work for our family.
Jason always protects us and makes us feel safe.

I want to make all of my husband's dreams come true.  I wish he could stay home with us and homeschool with us.  I wish money were no big deal and unnecessary.  But we need to pay the mortgage and feed the fam.

I know that pesticides and fertilizers are dangerous and harmful.  I make conscious choices to buy organic food for our family.   But I understand that advances are being made, Jason now injects some of the more harmful chemicals directly into the tree or the root system, thus he has less exposure and so do other passersby and the environment is less affected.  But, every time I get on facebook and see someone has posted something about pesticides or Monsanto or GMOs, I have an anxiety attack.  I do believe that it's good that the public is aware of this and I do want to believe the American people can make a difference and change things (although it seems lobbyists' money talks and our politicians care more about that than what the American people want).

I think part of my fear is rooted in fact and what I see on Facebook about Monsanto, GMO labeling, etc. and part of my fear is based on the emotions of losing a loved one in the last year.  I have been giving a lot of thought to deleting my facebook account.  I'm kind of over it.  It causes a lot of stress. It seems to be a breeding ground for dissent and disagreement with all of the political and religious image and quote repostings.  BUT it's the only way I keep in touch with some people AND our homeschool group posts trips and outings ONLY on facebook.

All I can do is pray.  Pray for my husband's health and safety.  Pray that our country outlaws GMOs and approves food labeling.  Pray that facebook implodes.