© 2021 Lynsey

The Apprentice

I started writing this post back in August 2014. It seems like forever ago. It was a Saturday morning. I was dozing because I like to sleep-in just a little after a long week. Mate, my father-in-law, did too, so he’d waited until almost 8:00 before he called me to get some help.

I don’t think he really needed any help, it’s just that sometimes it’s easier to get things started with someone helping out. My father-in-law worked hard all his life and he usually completed any home maintenance by himself. He’d only just started asking me if I’d like to help out too. I was happy to help, and, there was the added bonus of learning some of his tips and techniques gained through his years working as a painter and his home DIY. I’d noticed the roles were beginning to change for us. There was less of him being the ‘boss’ and more of me feeling like an equal buddy. I’d learned a few things along the way too, so that made me at least some sort of useful…

Sprint forward seven years, and it’s December 2021. At the moment we’re working on renovating our home. Every day I do some kind of work on the walls, floors, or any of the 101 other places needing attention. Sometimes it’s nothing more than the humble act of sweeping the floor and looking at the work done so far. I often feel my father-in-law is with me when I’m working. He’s not, of course, he died back in September 2016, surrounded by his loving family. But he’s with each of us as we carry his story forward in our own ways.

In my way of carrying his story on, I fancy I can hear his grunt of frustration when things don’t work as they should. I grin when I imagine I hear his ready laugh when (almost to the amazement of all) things work better than expected. I can’t believe how much I sense Mate’s presence whenever I’m working on our home. I’m still the apprentice but I’m making progress. I feel so grateful for the skills, knowledge, and techniques, the values and attitudes I’ve learned from Mate. I like to think he’d be pleased and proud with the progress we’ve made in our home and in our lives.

03. Every day is an opportunity to reflect on the past.
04. Every day is an opportunity to cultivate the promise of the future.
14. Every day the ordinary can be the extraordinary.

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