Thursday, May 03, 2007

Taking back control. =)

Hi. It's just Nitty.Gritty. me again. I had a post partially written and saved last night. But, as I sat down to finish it, I decided to ask Chip if he wanted a turn writing Nitty.Gritty. again. As you saw, he took me up on that offer. I had no idea what he would blog about. He's threatened to 'shut this blog down' several times, and doesn't always get what I write about, so, it was a bit of a risk for me- just to turn this place over to him.I was laughing as I pulled up and read his post...and told him he should get a real blog of his own. I'd read it. =)
Truly, though, if you had been in our home yesterday morning, you would have gotten a real dose of what life throws at us sometimes. It was classic Nitty.Gritty. stuff. First of all, Chip and I had stayed up way too late the night before, and then Bella was awake early- with crusty eyes and a runny nose. She needed some calming down before we even had the chance to sit up. Next, I went downstairs to waken Brock, only to step in soggy carpet just outside the door of his room. Wet, soggy carpet...that shouldn't have been wet at all. Yep. It was a home repair that needed immediate attention. So, Chip headed off to Home Depot. I was left to get the kids ready for school, and was just hoping to get everyone in their respective places by the time the bell rang. =) That hot shower I was hoping for with the Buttercream Frosting shower gel was one of the first things to get 'axed' from my "list-of-things-I-wanted-to-do-but-instead-life-is-demanding-otherwise" list. That and my morning brewed coffee.
By the time Chip came back home, I think we both were expecting to be greeted with growing sarcasm and disgust for the way things were not yet 7:30am.
Instead, I think we joked about how we should have guessed this kind of morning would occur, because we had enjoyed a nice day/evening the previous one. You know, that whole top of the mountain followed by the valley kind of thinking? For us, the 'mountain' is often when things are just going okay; we thrive on that. So when a day goes well, or even a few days, we sort of mentally prepare ourselves that something certainly could be just around the corner.
Maybe we are just getting good at preparing ourselves for the valleys, but I think it had to do with some prayers that people were saying on behalf of our family, but unbeknownst to us. That and I just am getting more and more determined to try to laugh through the 'crazy' stuff. The stuff I can't control in life- that just happens.
It happened to be a sewer pump and a sick 4 year old missing her favorite day of the week at preschool ("Girls' Show & Tell Day...every Wednesday") and lack of sleep. I can handle that. Really, I just told myself things could be so much worse. I'm beginning to realize that falling apart at the seams over stuff like this is just not worth my time, energy, stress levels, and the tension that it creates between Chip and me, and then translates to the kids. In the end, granted, it's taken a long time and a lot of trials and valleys and 'big stuff' for me to see this, but I DO see, that it's just the way life goes- so I am learning to take the ride and not let the ride take me. Does that make sense?
You know what happened this time around? Instead of anger and chaos and yelling and all the fun stuff that has happened in previous episodes like this one, there was smiling, and I even got a quick shower and hair done, and had an extra minute to hug Chip and thank him for keeping his cool too. There wasn't any major 'drama'...and in fact, it sort of felt like we'd just 'won something'. Like an invisible arm-wrestling match or something. I don't know how to explain it, but things- as unexpected and not so thrilling as they were- turned out to be alright. A couple hundred dollars (I hate spending money on stuff like sewer pumps!!) later, and a few rough spots with Bella because of missing school and having goopey eyes, and we never did get caught up on sleep, nor did I get my coffee...but still. It wasn't as bad as it used to be, and it wasn't nearly as bad as some people spent their days.
In fact, I think it's one of the first times my Fed Ex man has ever seen me with my hair and make-up done. That's how good the day ended up. =)
It wasn't perfect-far from it- but I can honestly say, "My sewer pump broke and soaked the carpet, causing us to have to spend unexpected time and money- which I really don't like to have to do...but I still had a good day."
That was yesterday. Today was much better. Thanks for asking. =) My intent is not to brag on myself nor to complain about my troubles, but to serve as a reminder for the next time things don't go so well. Chip can say to me, "go back and read your Nitty.Gritty. post about the day things weren't going all that hot and you still survived". And if I'm smart, I'll be reminded, and take my own advice. Life is so much about how we respond to the things that come at us. I can't say enough about following the path toward happiness, resolution, understanding, and letting go. It makes a world of difference!


Lisa G said...

Hi Jody :) Hey, I'm your first comment :) We have well water that I know nothing about but I think it is time to get it cleaned out before we have a home water emergency too, lol.

Kim said...

I read your blog but don't usually comment. I loved your post today - it was the perfect thing for me to read at this point in my life. I especially loved "so I am learning to take the ride and not let the ride take me." I'm learning these things a little later in life than you are, and I thank you for putting them out there to remind me. I'm going to remember that quote - put it in my journal and keep it for a rainy day. Thank you.

Lisa said...

It's so nice to see reminders like this! I'm all stressed about getting our house on the market, keeping everything clean, dealing with Cole crying as I drop him off for school, and whining to myself that I have nothing NEW to wear to my graduation! Seriously? Is that important? No Mam - and thanks for the reminder. Two years ago we were home after having spent 6 weeks with Cole receiving radiation and he could barely walk. We were preparing to do a benefit dinner to raise money so we'd be able to just live during the next phase of Cole's treatment - chemo! So a big Nitty.Gritty. Thank you to you today Jody! I needed that! So does it really even matter what I'm wearing under my gown for graduation - no one can even see it - why am I sweating it? Well, I'm not now!! :)

Cris said...

That is really great advice, and oh so true. :)

Joy said...

Thanks for sharing! I just wish I could remember all of that in the middle... or better yet, at the beginning... of a crisis! I always seem to look back on days like that and wish I'd kept calmer. Being calm and having the right perspective in the middle of a lack-of-sleep, everything's-inconvenient-and-not-my-plan crisis is my ultra-elusive goal right now. It's good to know that progress is possible, even if it's two steps forward, one step back.

mindakms said...

For example, Wednesday when your sewer pump was misbehaving my 40 year old brother was having 8.5 hours of brain surgery. Not good. And yet my take away was this: He's still alive. The tumor wasn't cancer. We get to spend more time with him this summer as he rehabs. There is always a brighter side, eh? God Bless girl!