Close to 20 years ago, my hubby decided to put in a fish pond in our back yard. He dug it by hand about 8 ft by 9 ft and 3 1/2 ft deep. At that time people weren’t making ponds with liners, so he hand cemented the pond and painted it. After a few years, he decided to add on to the pond by digging a second one about 2.5 ft deep and putting in a channel for the fish to pass from one to the other. He put in water plants in the smaller area and the fish spawned every year.
Hubby built a bridge to go across the channel. The fish continued to thrive and we even attracted a few frogs. He added a waterfall in the deep end and it was so nice to sit on our deck and hear the water running and look down to see the fish. Landscaping and flowers were added and it was such a peaceful place. For years we enjoyed the pond and hubby was able to maintain it. It required vacuuming out the mucky bottom, patching cracks in the cement to keep the water from leaking out and so much more. But he enjoyed the work and making our yard a pleasant and beautiful place to spend time.
Hubby began having trouble breathing and couldn’t exert himself as much as he had in the past. Caring for the pond became too much for him to handle. In 2010, he was diagnosed with COPD and that combined with his mitral valve leaking prevented him from doing many of the things he used to do. The pond leaked due to cracks and the water level dropped. The plants grew too thick and the pond began to decline. The pond became a nasty eyesore and a reminder to him that he couldn’t do things that he’d always loved. Sadly, we had to make the decision to fill in the pond.
I could tell how much this was hurting my hubby but it hurt just as much to see him so dejected over not being able to care for things any longer. So we talked and decided to keep the shallow side of the pond. This would be easier to maintain. We could put in a pond liner so he wouldn’t have to worry about the cement cracking and leaking. I could do most of the work, but he could still be part of it as well. Sounded like a good compromise. Little did I know how much work this would involve.
Part two will be posted later this week…