Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Saturday Night Wrestling - Or as my dad called it, rasslin

This week... will. go. down. in. history...

As the week I aged a good ten years trying to convince Kid 3 that he wouldn't die at cotillion class. Here he is right before class.  So sad to have a mother care about your manners and ability to function in society in somewhat of a classy manner.   

It was pretty much like trying to put a suit on a monkey. 

I also last week had an impromptu stomach virus which began suddenly after my second class of the morning last Tuesday and right before the third.  And I had to call and cancel that third class as I was held prisoner by my stomach in the gym bathroom and afraid for my life to move.   I eventually made it home and proceeded to feel sorry for myself for the next 24 hours. 

When I went back to work a couple days after, I was admiring my profile in the mirror and remarking to myself how incredibly flat my tummy region appeared all tucked into my spandex.  And I have to honestly ask myself if the slenderizing effects of a good bout of sickness is worth the  I just did a million crunches appearance ... but the jury's still out on that one.  It's still a little too fresh in my memory to make that call.

I also woke up today and decided that it would be a good day to strip all the slipcovers from the den furniture and wash them.  All while I got three kids ready for school, myself ready for work, went and taught 3 classes and fielded a phone call from a school nurse and an angry middle school teacher.   

Here's the state of affairs in my den right now.  

I think I'm going to re-plump the arms of the couch with some fabric batting and a staple gun when I get it all stripped down later today.  Because I'm crazy.   

If you look at a couple of these pics in this post you'll see a neatly folded pile of blankets and pillows in the background.  That actually comes with two stories. 

The first being that Saturday night I was beside myself with worry about Kid 3's football banquet being held at a local BBQ restaurant and knowing that the smell of smoke and meat together doesn't set well with my allergies or my tendency toward vegetarianism.  Fireman Dave was at work saving the world/ cooking a gourmet meal for the fellas, so he was no use to me in my dilemma.  So I ended up making what could've been a questionable choice and decided to send Kid 1 and his friend to act as chaperones at the banquet.  It cost me about $30 for the favor which bought them each an all a teen boy can eat meat plate and endless tunes on the juke box.  And all came out alive and well at the end of the night with Kid 3 reporting that the banquet was awesome and Kid 1 and friend full of pride that they were both responsible and got to eat something different than I had planned for dinner at home.

So I owed Kid 3 a return favor and he chose a sleepover with the other BBQ chaperone.  That's what the pile of blankets was about, part 1.  Long day, long story, but picture me at home, single parenting for the night, 4 boys with full tummies and energy to spare, and lots of laundry because the BBQ restaurant made them all smell like a fire pit so I had to wash everything before I let them near the furniture.  Which already smelled of boy and dog and is why I am boiling the slipcovers today.  

I also demanded showers from all, including our guest, so I could breathe the rest of the night.  Then they played Xbox for a while but the bottomless caffeinated drinks set in and the energy was exploding in the room so they held a full fledged wrestling match in the den floor as I tried to go to sleep.  And when I went in to ask what on earth was happening I saw all the furniture had been moved to make room for the Sportatorium's Saturday Night Wrestling.  Or as my dad called it, rasslin.   Any of y'all Dallas people remember that?

Story #2 about those blankets....

The sleepover came and went and the house showed the results of the party.  Now granted, I woke in not such a great mood and church didn't really sway that because, well, Sunday.  Sunday for us is worse than a school morning and we argue with the boys to be ready for church on time and they're not -  and then I get all mad and picture them living out eternity in damnation and I get upset.  Pretty much a regular Sunday event around here.  

So when we pulled in the driveway after church, and Fireman Dave being in tune to my feelings like the wonderful husband that he is, he had me stay in the car and took the boys inside to assign them each jobs of cleaning  up the wreckage so I wouldn't burst into tears while loading another load into the washing machine.   THAT is the only reason those blankets got folded.  Money may or may not have exchanged hands in the deal.  

But husband took me to Starbucks for a few minutes, long enough for me to get tears in my eyes worrying again about the quality of my parenting.  And a little about the qualify of my wifing.  Is that a word?  I apparently forgot to greet Fireman Dave lovingly at the door after his shift ended that morning because I was asleep following the late night rasslin going on in my den.  I think there are marriage books about not doing exactly THAT in order to ensure a long union.

But I have to admit that I've been doing a little rasslin of my own lately.  Asking myself if my kids are all that they can be.  Or maybe all that they should be.  And when I listen closely to those words, they just sound mean no matter how I look at it.  Maybe I'm mean for even letting those ideas come into my head.  But I sat in church Sunday morning and in the newsletter, read an article about a teen who is captain of this and star of that, and how she excels in sports, academics and life in general.  Oh, and she loves Jesus and probably volunteers all her free time visiting sick children.  

So as husband and I sat at Starbucks and I let all the frustrations flow out loud enough for the guy sitting next to us to want to move, I  heard the wisdom of my husband as I have so many times before.  And I really mean that.  Sometimes he has a certain perspective on things that makes me take a look at my own, pointing out the hundred holes in my theories.  The man has an innate wisdom which comes from someplace that I apparently forgot to visit.  

He reminded me again that the boys are a work in progress.  And that we have to finally admit that we aren't in control of everything concerning our kids;  That we have to accept that our boys are their own people and will have to make mistakes and learn lessons along the way as we did... And that maybe it's time I step back and become the encourager as they go about things on their own.  

And I thought I was doing well with that the past couple of days till the angry teacher phone call this afternoon.   I'm thinking 2 days of practice isn't long enough to change my old habits.  I'll keep working on it, Fireman Dave.  I'll also try to be nicer to you when you get home from work. 

Y'all, I answered the phone yesterday on another mis-dialed call from my mother.  The first time I've even heard her voice in a very long time.  I almost didn't answer when I saw who it was on caller ID, but I worried it may be an emergency.  And we exchanged a few seconds of small talk as she realized she called the wrong person, and I waited.  I waited for more, maybe.  Maybe an apology. Maybe an invitation.  Maybe something that would lead me to believe that I matter enough to say more than a few misplaced words on a wrong number call.  

It's been a challenging week.  But I know people who have been challenged with more. I've gotta keep it all in perspective.  

post script.... I ran across this picture on Facebook that I'm not sure I've ever seen before.  
This is a thousand years ago in the living room of the house I grew up in.  It's the youth group of the church husband and I both attended.  Seated on the piano bench is the very young Fireman Dave. (in the dark blue shirt)  Seated next to him, a few feet over at the table, is me. (the one with very short dark blonde hair -  and too busy talking to be doing what I was probably supposed to be doing.)   Just shows again how things have a way of working out. 

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