Monday, November 22, 2010

Didn't Come for the Weeds

I read this story today, it's a bit long, but it is so good:

"[My father's name was] Henry Eyering. To appreciate this story, you have to realize that it occurred when he was nearly eighty and had bone cancer. He had bone cancer so badly in his hips that he could hardly move. The pain was great. Dad... had the responsibility for the welfare farm. An assignment was given to weed a field of onions, so Dad assigned himself to go work on the farm. He never told me how hard it was, but I have met several people who were with him that day. I talked to one of them on the phone, and he said that he was weeding in the row next to Dad through much of the day. He told me the same thing that others who were there that have told me. He said that the pain was so great that Dad was pulling himself along on his stomach with his elbows. He couldn't kneel. The pain was too great for him to kneel. Everyone who has talked to me about that day has remarked how Dad smiled and laughed and talked happily with them as they worked in that field of onions.

"Now, this is the joke Dad told me on himself afterward. He said he was there at the end of the day. After all the work was finished and the onions were all weeded, someone said to him, 'Henry, good heavens!" You didn't pull those weeds, did you? Those weeds were sprayed two days ago, and they were going to die anyway.'

"Dad just roared. He thought that was the funniest thing. He thought it was a great joke on himself. He had worked through the day in the wrong weeds. They had been sprayed and would have died anyway.

"When Dad told me this story, I knew how tough it was. So I asked him, 'Dad, how could you make a joke out of that? How could you take it so pleasantly?' He said something to me that I will never forget, and I hope you won't. He said, 'Hal, I wasn't there for the weeds.'"

Now, I know that might've been a bit long winded, but I think that story has a message in it for everyone. Let me repeat: I think this story has a message in it for EVERYONE. 

While we all go through life, we all do things. Sometimes stupid, sometimes fun, happy, cool... Sometimes sad or hard. Then we'll turn around and realize that we took a unnecessary detour that didn't do anything really at all good for anybody else. It really may have seemed as "no point." But maybe we go through things that seem that way, but are really for a reason.

Let me tell you something- though we all go through things- we all can make it through we can. Complaining, and going about it with a horrible attitude helps nobody. I am trying everyday to be happier- and to remember that I didn't do things "for the weeds." We don't do things to make ourselves miserable, but we do it to find happiness. And by going about doing the right things happily- as Henry did- then we gain something. We gain something even in the pain that we feel each and every day as Henry did. 

I know that we all can do better at having the right attitude. That even though life seems to be the worst thing in the world sometimes, that even though school is hard, work is hard, relationships, living, friends, family are all hard... we can get through it, as long as we remember that we aren't here for the weeds. We are here in life to be the best we can. We are here to become stronger people.


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