Kristen’s Comment: The shame when you stand out for all the wrong reasons

For the past two weeks, every time I left my house I found I was hanging my head in shame.

No, I’m not embarrassed by my house.

Well, not really. At least not on a typical day.

But ever since the sun has decided to reappear in our lives, combined with all of the rain we’ve had, the grass and the weeds have been growing. And growing.

So my ever dutiful husband goes out to mow the lawn. The front yard isn’t bad, but the back yard is certainly a chore. It’s a fairly large yard and I figured it would probably take him awhile to get a handle on it.

So imagine my surprise when in walks my husband a good 15 minutes later. Wow, I thought, it either A) wasn’t as bad as I thought, B) he’s Superman, or C) he didn’t do it properly (as is my usual nag).

As it turned out, I was oh-for-three.

The lawn mower wasn’t working. So another weekend goes by and the grass continues to grow. I ask my husband about the lawn mower. He takes it down to the mechanic who thankfully says he can fix it but it’s going to take awhile because he’s behind about three weeks. Apparently we’re not alone in having lawn mower malfunction problems this year.

Meanwhile, you guessed it. The grass continues to grow. To the point that now I’m embarrassed to be attached to the house and I walk as quickly as I can from the front door to my car each time I leave and every time I come home.

It doesn’t get any better when one evening a gentleman knocks on our door and politely asks if we would like any help with our yard. He says he does maintenance and handy work and tells my husband to please just give him a call if we’d like to take him up on his offer.

That’s it, I think, I’m moving out until the lawn mower is fixed or I‘ll have to keep a low profile and only leave the house under the cover of darkness or else in a really good disguise.

I know only too well that no one likes the neighbour who doesn’t keep the outside of their house up, the one that sticks out like a sore thumb and the rest of the neighbours complain about.

At this point, I’ve shamed myself. I get it. I really do. As a co-worker said to me the other day, you feel like putting a sign up in your yard acknowledging that your yard looks terrible but that it’s not your fault and beauty is on the horizon.

In my case, the yard did finally get fixed up this past weekend. Luckily for us, the mechanic got our lawn mower all fixed up a week early (thank you, thank you!!). The front yard looks fantastic now but the grass in the back yard had gotten so long that it was up to my husband’s waist and will need another good going over this weekend.

But it’s thankfully so much better than it was and I can even enter and exit my house in broad daylight now, without any disguises.

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