Tuesday, May 21, 2013

What I learned yesterday

Yesterday was a tough day at our house.  We had a long (although generally quite positive) weekend.  But busy work schedules meant limited family time and a truncated version of our family meeting.  Sleep has been severely short lately and I knew the coming week would be a challenge.

When I stepped out of my front door, I took a deep breath, willing myself to stay positive.  And then I saw it: the small waterfall rising out of my water meter box.  Uh oh.  We've had our share of plumbing problems.  They are awful.  I called the water department (Hey, maybe it's on THEIR side of the meter... wouldn't that be aweso..) I couldn't even finish the thought they were so quick to tell me it wasn't them.  The inspector was actually quite nice and told me what he thought the problem was.  Next, we called plumbers.  Only plumbers are sleazy scum balls.  Not only did they not show up or call, the quote was indefensibly astronomical.  With a little help, Gavin dug up the pipe, we found the problem, and he fixed it.  We had water late (late late) that night.

Not that I doubted Gavin (we don't have a great track record with plumbing...), but I decided I was going to have to wash the baby's bottles either way.  I gathered a bunch of water from the cups and bottles I tend to leave laying around our house and the water pitchers I keep stashed (a side effect of growing up in the desert, I suppose) and I washed our bottles. Through out the day, my mood varied from a 2-5 on a 10 scale, I'd say.  But as I washed, even completely sure we were going to bed covered in dirt, my perspective shifted.  "Wow, I'm really lucky that I normally have running water." The thought sprung to my mind as if read by some crazy cliche mother in a sitcom.  "Seriously, without leaving my kitchen, I was STILL able to get several gallons of fresh clean water to wash my healthy happy baby's bottles with."  As I calculated the most efficient way to clean all of bottles using the least amount of water, my mind reminded me how lucky I really really truly am. Clearly I'm a much softer person as a mother than I was before.  And I don't just mean around my mid section, although that's certainly true as well.

I learned another lesson about myself.  During a particularly poorly timed banking meeting, I realized how valuable my time is.  I understood this in theory before.  I budget my time much like I do my money, but until I sat in that bank, I never fully understood just how sacred my time is to me now.  I rushed the man along, I don't care if Vodafone bought duel monitors for their employees even a little bit.  I can't stand hearing about market trends and even the facts that I should care about.  I don't want to spend another second of my time here.  Where do I want to spend it?  Watching a 5 month old pick up various color blocks one at a time to examine them individually before trying to shove them in his mouth.  Amazingly, I didn't just realize this, I told him as much.  

And finally, I was reminded how invaluable my 'tribe' is.  I know it's cliche sounding, but it's the term that's been floating around in my head lately.   We have some really good people in our lives.  I value this more now than I ever thought possible.  There were very very very few people I opened up to over the last few difficult years.  While I still think that might have been what I needed at the time, I want to connect to the people I care about more and in more meaningful ways.

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