Last Sunday (January 30th) was the beginning of my fifth year supporting Ryan in the Arrowhead 135 Winter Ultra. As I parked at the Hillsboro United Parish, I noticed a chemical smell. With no factories near
|Ryan @ Jan 31 start|
downtown Hillsboro, ND, I was puzzled by the smell. As I unlocked the church doors the air was crisp and fresh. Following worship, I listened to the navigation prompts directing me on county and state highways to Bemidji, MN. As my speed lessened through the small towns and especially in Bemidji, the smell was noticeable again. Could it be oil? Was it a belt? Parking to investigate, the smoke rising from the engine compartment confirmed that something was amiss. The belts were not hot, not loose, not glazed. It must be oil. The oil level was checked. A quart was purchased and a small amount added to the engine. The final push to International Falls, MN to meet Ryan was uneventful.
|My family of origin|
|Engine ran but it did not move!|
My family of origin was loosely connected to extended family. We did not place emphasis on specific holidays. Heirlooms, as well as traditions were not a facet of our family. My wife's family was the opposite. Gathering on holidays was more sacred than the holiday itself! Values, expectations, traditions, and furnishings were to be followed and passed through generations. This aspect of family was initially attractive to me. Over time I saw it as both humorous and constricting. I learned to embrace it because I choose to enter into the relationship. Numerous times over our years of marriage my wife clearly stated that our family acted dysfunctionally. As we grow in years realizing that our future is shorter than our past, my wife wants to pass on stuff. Most of the stuff is material in nature. It is too late for passing on values and traditions. Our daughters have no need of material stuff. It does not hold the value which my wife places on it. Is this being dysfunctional? Our daughters are choosing how they want to function. Do we make judgments about today based upon the norms of the past? Do we all have to operate the same way in order to be a functioning family?
|The evidence on the ground|