“BAIT Out!” Seth shouted from the car as it reached the end of the driveway, slowing to turn onto the main gravel road. “Did he just shout ‘Peace Out’?” I asked Russ and the kids. Russ said, “I think he said “BAIT Out.” Yes, that is what he said and it was a perfect conclusion to the time we had spent together.
It all started Tuesday night around 8pm when I was working in my kitchen. Russ and Morgan were sitting at the dining room table with two guests. I could hear some commotion at the garden doors off the dining room and looked up to see people at my door. There was that split second where my brain was sorting out what I was seeing and what I was hearing, was I hearing my daughters at the door? No. That was???????……….seriously!!!??!!?? I shouted out loud enough for the girls in the basement to hear “is that my sister?” They came racing up. It was my sister. What followed was alot of hugging, some tears and laughter.
Earlier in the week I had sent a message to our family chat to say that the kids and I were not going to be able to make it to our regular family time at the Kyle Family Cottage. With things being as hard as they are on the ranch I just cannot leave Russell with the work here and take his crew and be eight hours away and feel at peace. My sister decided if she was going to see us she would need to claim the time this week. She worried that I would fuss if I knew they were coming, hence, the surprise arrival. She came laden with a care package so large that I am tempted to believe it was divine intervention that I was moved to clean my fridges the evening before. That care package was the result of the baking, cooking and purchasing of all three of my sisters and my cousin. They were sending love and comfort and some ready to go meals. It was unbelievably exciting and overwhelming.
I think this visit and the family care that was a part of it is a really good illustration of the concept my blog is centred on, the power of really being seen and really seeing one another, I see you, you see me. I sent that message to the family chat and soon after heard back the concern for the ranch, for each of us, and the regret that we couldn’t be part of things this summer. What I didn’t expect is that my message, perhaps alongside the info in recent blogs, would result in such concrete action. Words go a long, long way in providing comfort, encouragement and understanding, but when the words are backed up by action there couldn’t be a more solid way of saying “I see you.” Its a short trip from that clear message “I see you” to the lived feeling that we are loved. It is unbelievable how valuable these messages of understanding and love are. I asked Russ what is behind this for him, what makes being seen so significant. He said, “because it tells me that we are not alone.” That is major. (We have good support here, we definitely know we are not alone, but I think there are times when you get so deep into the trenches that you start to forget.)
Margie and her kids Seth and Brodie arrived with great sensitivity about imposing on us (so they had a booking at the hotel), they were clear that they were here to help in whatever way they could. I knew that what I longed for was both practical and emotional. This team was well suited. Margie is a great listener, funny, wise and MY SISTER. Seth is both interested and capable with mechanical and construction stuff, Brodie has her own drone photography business. We put them to work. They helped us move some cows, Margie tackled a pile of dishes that had grown overnight it seemed, Seth fixed doorknobs and cupboard hinges, Brodie photographed our yard and hayfields, Seth mowed the lawn, Margie talked with me about losing our Mom and we all worked together on a couple of special meals. All of this is where Seth’s proclamation at the end of the driveway comes into play. On the way down from Saskatoon they had read my blog post highlighting my “bad ass” self. They got joking that they were “B.A.I.T” the bad ass intervention team. Indeed they were and as Seth offered his parting words it seemed like a celebration of their “mission accomplished!” Indeed it was. We were seen and supported, we were enabled to carry on being our bad ass ranching selves for a little while longer.
A few pictures…………