So, my two year old is getting potty trained. Well, she watches shows like “Go, Potty, Go!”, sings the songs, reads the books, and goes consistently every morning. And that is it. End of interest.
We have her in training pants, but she has recently developed an “ouchy” on her hip where it the pants sit. So, I am moving her up a size. They might be a bit baggy, but too tight is too tight.
This makes me wonder what other things in my life are a little fit a little too tightly and are rubbing my family raw.
I annoy my husband often because anytime we need something fixed around the house, I say, “Oh, I’ll just ask my dad to do it.” Huge advantage to living near my family- free help and invaluable expertise. I recently asked my dad how he got to be so handy, and he surprised me when he said, “Trial and error.” My mom just nodded vigorously and shared a story about a chainsaw and a front door that resulted in a giant slanted gap between the bottom of the door and the floor. I immediately felt slightly guilty that I gave my husband such grief and resolved to go easy on him. I thought I was doing a pretty good job…until this past Thursday.
I was returning from my part-time tutoring gig when I see several vehicles in front of my house- my dad’s, my brother-in-law’s, and a city vehicle. I come inside to see my husband, babe-in-arms, shaking his head on my arrival. It happened like this.
My husband, in an effort to impress me and fix a faucet (one that he had made worse last time he tried to fix it), had taken off a fixture that sent water spraying everywhere. There was no shutoff anywhere in the house; my brother-in-law found the shutoff from the street after stabbing the ground with his big tool until he found it buried under grass and mud. My husband had been plugging up the water, trying to call people, listening to our son cry, and giving directions to our willing but clueless two year old until just before I had arrived. I felt awful.
God used the whole situation to teach me 3 things. Number 1: “Bad” things might be good things in disguise. My dad went under our house and found a few things that, unseen might have led to flooding or a fire. Number 2: Community is a WONDERFUL thing. If you don’t have one, do all you can to get one. The quick response of my family plus a guy from our church paying for new faucets and installing them made the whole nightmare an almost painless experience! But Number 3 is the most important to me: My expectations affect people.
I may throw out off handed comments or express sighs and shake my head. I go on with my day, but my husband, and sometimes my kids, notice and are hurt.
I am sure this lesson will be relearned in many ways throughout my mothering experiences, but I share as a reminder. Loosen up, Ladies! You, your spouse, and your kids are still In-Training, and that is just as it should be.