FFF #39–Nurturing the Family when life is happening!
This is going to be my “Holy Cow!” blog post! Things at our house have been a little bit crazy. As you are probably aware, if you have been reading recently……..we went for 8 days without a washing machine because one of our sewer lines was down. It has finally been repaired and now we are catching up on that week of laundry, which is a ton, I might add.
The ‘Holy Cow’ part of that is two fold. After the initial weekend without the washer, I took seven loads of laundry to the laundry mat to keep things functioning. Well, the laundry mat’s washing machines are smaller than mine (I have a double capacity washer), of which I am apparently not grateful for enough. At the laundry mat, we washed five of their loads (only three of mine) and spent $20.00!! I about fell off my chair, or the folding table, actually. $20.00 to wash three loads of laundry!! I brought seven, which probably would have been 11 there. I only did three because of the time, and money, not to mention that it was completely crowded and busy!! If I had washed all the laundry I brought to ‘get us through’ the week, I would have spent more than $40.00—for less than a week’s worth of laundry! That is the first ‘Holy Cow’.
|Sorry…couldn’t resist this one.|
The second, was the amount we spent to fix the plumbing. Oh my goodness! It was $800.00!! After a week of being down a bathroom (which wasn’t so bad) and not being able to wash laundry, I was happy to pay that $800.00 to the plumber and not the laundry mat!
My other ‘Holy Cow’ event for the week, also involves money. I spent $60.00 to mail Scuff’s Christmas package to Brazil. It was not a large package—two small jars of peanut butter, two sticks of deodorant, two bags of Kit-Kats, and three white dress shirts! The postage was more than the package was worth. Sheesh!
During that crazy week, we also had two funerals and a baptism, and there was another car accident on our corner.
But the with all of this stuff happening at our house, and more that I haven’t touched on, there are still children who live here, little ones, (or really, one very loud, and demanding one) who need my attention. Regardless of the stress I am trying to manage, my struggle has been to manage the needs of Spike. Every time I have needed to go somewhere (even just to drop off the boys for school, or to take Sun to class) Spike says, “Don’t go Mommy. Pleeeeeaase don’t go!” and starts to cry. Then when he finally accepts that I am leaving and he is not coming, we have to give four or five hugs and kisses before we can actually leave or his feelings are hurt and he feels neglected and left behind.
I do not usually take him grocery shopping with me. It is a hang-over of my childhood. (I watched my mother take all of us to the grocery store and swore that I would never, ever take children to the grocery store!) But recognizing his needy-ness, I decided he needed to be able to go with me to run errands yesterday. Plus that gave Sun some uninterrupted homework time. So from 10:00-11:30, Spike and I mailed Scuff’s package, got gas, and went shopping. We came home, had lunch, put things away. He still was upset at me when I picked the little guys up from school and when I needed to take Sun to her acting class, he melted again. He was throwing a fit, because even though I had cooked dinner, he wanted me to stay and feed it to him. Geesh! Really?!! (And while I was cooking dinner, I took time out while the noodles were boiling, and wrote his name with him, six times, while he sat on my lap and we talked about the letters in his name and traced them—probably 10 or 12 minutes). I don’t know what is going on with him, but he has been so very, very needy lately!
I am very good at nurturing people. It is a gift! Probably a little bit of learned art also. So when I have people, who I am bending over backward to meet their needs and then they are still clamoring for more, I struggle to stop ‘my plan’ and attend to their needs, especially in circumstances where there are other necessary demands on my time. After so many ‘high maintenance’ children, I have become pretty good at dropping The Plan of Carin, to attend to them. But Spike, lately, is teaching me something else. I haven’t quite put my finger on it. I will have to pray for clarity to help me out.
There is a balance, you know? I can help and teach and train and little people need a ton of that! I am not putting my children on the back burner so that I can do ‘what I want’. I am helping them along, nurturing them, loving them, changing them, picking them up and holding them, and their idea of what is needed is sometimes more than I can give. But Spike, at least, is insisting on me being the one to meet his needs, he is unwilling to have someone else assist in the process. That is driving me crazy! (And the whole potty-training thing? Ya’—–we aren’t even going there yet.)
|copyright Karen Larsen photography|
Well, now that I have rambled on, I am late making breakfast for the crew. Luckily, Spike is still asleep! Shhhh…..maybe I can get that done before he is awake. I’ll have to have Shorty help me, as he is already awake and going through his own emotional drama. He’s a tweeny, you know.