Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Underwear Story

This week was challenging on many different levels.
It started on Monday with a call from a friend whom also has much to do with our adopting 7 kids over the last 7 years. It shook me, mostly due to the fact that her voice sounded accusatory, and I just wasn't expecting that from her. After a few terse emails, we got the issues resolved, and parted friends again. Then, I got sick with a headcold/flu type thing, and had to cancel a much awaited outing with another friend. Bummer, big time. But I had to rest up, since my dear husband was facing surgery on Thursday night. It was to be a routine hydrocele hernia. 24 hours recovery.
Right. It was much more complicated, a painful cyst was removed, and he came home with an ice pack where most men wouldn't think of putting one. That night I was exhausted, sick and out of patience with the older kids who let me down with not getting their chores done, and one daughter that had not even done her homework. There were no clean clothes for the 6 year old for school the next day, and my temper flaired.
"Can't anyone else in this family see the things that have to be done before morning??" I hollered. The kids shrunk a little, feelings hurting, and I felt like the worst mom in the world. For one, if I were a good mom, they would be learning these things, and I certainly wouldn't be yelling at them when they "goofed", right?
I went to bed, berating myself for the mistakes I had made, and wishing I could escape with a couple of "shots" of Nyquil for my aching sinus headache. But who would hear my husband if he called out in the night?
By Saturday, in a home where (usually) chores are divided and shared, I was tired, tired, and more tired of being sick and tired. And cranky, and mean. I had to escape. I grabbed a Taco, sat at the Riverfront, and watched six white seagulls perched on their haunches on six posts rising from the dock in the river. Since there were no boats or fishermen out in the overcast noontime weather, the gulls were content to sit and watch the ducks float past, every now and then tail feathers raised to the sky as the critter tipped below the water surface to catch a treasure swimming underneath their underside. I visited two local stores looking for jeans for my ever growing 9 year old, and made it back home in just under two hours to the same (if not worse) chaos I had left earlier. But things were better.
My brother and his wife came to visit, breaking the tedium of the endless work awaiting my arrival, and our visit was pleasant. I had finished sorting through 20 bins of clothing for the cooler weather, placing summer clothes in the empty bins, and sending them back down to the basement for the next season. The work was fast, furius, and at the last minute, three of the girls and I were scrambling to get dressed warmly for our Harvest Party at the Girl Scout camp in a nearby town.
Once I got dressed, I was wishing I had taken more time to find a pair of underwear that were not so tight, and even wondering at more than one point during the evening if I had actually put them on sideways, or something!! It was uncomfortable for a time, but not unbearable, and we went on with our evening plans.
Returning home around ten that night, I finally switched into my pajamas, ready to shed the undies that had been aggravating me all evening. To my chagrin, I looked down to see the entire crotch of the panties had been chewed through by our puppy, and was hanging together with a few threads. NO WONDER I had been so uncomfortable in my jeans!!
I won't forget these underwear, although they went into the trash immediately upon removal!! You see, some days are just like that pair of panties. I rush to put the day "on", get moving even though things may not feel "just right." I struggle and squirm, wishing I were more comfortable, but do not always know until the end of the day when I relax and settle in for the night just exactly what had been bothering me all day. It may be the kids attitudes that "rub me wrong" or it may be something I heard someone say that didnt' feel "just right." It may be that I didn't take the time to thoroughly examine what was causing my uncomfortable feelings, because if I had taken the time to know what the irritant was, I could have changed it and had a better day.
So the underwear story is what I hope to remember this week. If things feel out of place, or awkward, maybe I just need to stop, remove the problem, and start all over again. Maybe I need to take a little more time for myself, making sure things are OK before I start my day. And maybe once I settle in for the night and relax, I can look around me and see just how great things are, and forgive myself for wearing a pair of "imperfect" undies. How good it feels when I don't let my undies get in a bunch!!

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