The First Pull

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In our family, your lawn is holy ground.  It represents who you are.  A good lawn is a life well lived.  This legacy was established by my father and when he passed the standard bearer became my brother Mark.  Tragically, my brother fell victim to ALS.  So, when his prized Honda lawn mower was turned over to me it was the passing of the torch.  To any other mortal, a lawn mower is simply a garden tool.  In this case, it was the family crown.


To anyone who cherishes his lawn there is nothing like starting up the lawn mower in the first days of Spring and to my brother Mark the grand prize of this sacred occasion was would the lawn mower start on the first pull?  A first pull start represented the kind of year you had and the kind of year you’re going to have.  A start on the first pull was a jackpot on a slot machine.


For some reason my anxiety ran high this year.  Not only was I worried that it would not start on the first pull, I didn’t think it would start at all.  No oil change, no spark plug change, just a fresh tank of gas.  Was this finally the year I was going to be proven unworthy.


April 10th is my brother’s birthday.  That is the day I attempt to start his legacy every year.  It came too fast this year. I was mentally unprepared for a failed start.  Out of the blue a sign of reassurance emerges.  My former neighbor, Scott, who moved away a year ago and handled all things mechanical for me suddenly texted out of the blue.  He’s standing by if it doesn’t start.


A sign had been sent.  I pushed my anxiety to the side and pulled the dust covered symbol of excellence out from behind the snow blower.  I march to the driveway with trepidation.  I look to the blue skies and wish my brother happy birthday and pull… starts!


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