Getting it Wrong While He Gets it Right

To say we had a busy weekend would be a tremendous understatement. I can’t remember the last time I arrived at work on Monday feeling this tired. My boss even asked me if I was ok.

The week leading into it was like the climb to the top of the roller coaster. Volleyball practice for the tournament on Saturday. Extra chimes practice for the concert on Sunday. Extra Destination Imagination practices as both of the older kids prepare for Regional competition next weekend. Extra Suzuki orchestra practice for the concert this week. Oh, and Friday was the Sweetheart Dance, which I had signed us up to chaperone back when life was marginally slower and family still lived in town.

The weekend itself was non-stop movement on the high-speed coaster, beginning with decorating for the dance Friday morning, a meeting at work, mom arriving that evening, and a late night, first at the dance and then helping my husband in the studio. Early rise on Saturday to head to the tournament an hour away, back home for bell choir practice and setup for the concert and dinner, a pleasant respite to celebrate National Margarita Day before finishing off Saturday with a DI performance. Sunday was filled with church and the concert/dinner with all the preparation crammed in between. I feel incredibly blessed to have had my mother and her boyfriend here to help out. The logistics were hopeless without them.

We knew the weekend would be full and we saw the week shaping up to be tight too. But we learned that there is always room for an emergency, whether you want it or not.

Late Thursday night, after I had gone to bed, my husband opened the fridge for a snack. Now, the freezer had been working overtime for about a week and we hadn’t been able to figure out why. That morning, his milk hadn’t seemed very cold but it didn’t trigger a clear thought as to why.

But that night, it became clear. The fridge was dead. He stayed up until 3 o’ clock in the morning, trying to diagnose and resurrect the refrigerator. No luck.

So Friday morning, I helped with the dance decorations (more on that in a later post) while he returned home with two tasks: continue repair attempts on the fridge and drag the old fridge back into the house. See, the dead fridge was actually new-to-us. The old one had been sitting on the front porch, right next to the front door, for months while we failed to get around to putting an ad in the paper.

That morning, we realized that we had forgotten to fix the fifty sandwiches we had committed to make for the dance so we made plans to each hit a different store: him to Wal-Mart for lunch meat, me to Braum’s for bread, and then meet at the church to assemble sandwiches and store in the church’s fridge.

I was miffed at him. I can’t remember why now. I think he was altering plans, probably because he didn’t remember what we had already settled on. I tried to call him at one point after we split for our set of rounds. I planned to pick up some breakfast while at Braum’s and wanted to know if he wanted something.

My first thought was to grab him a sausage biscuit. My second thought was that if he wanted something, he should have answered his phone. Not the most charitable thought, I know. Which finally gets me around to the point of this rambling post.

When he arrived at the church, he handed me a box of Junior Mints. “I thought they might help your day go better,” he said with a smile.

He then asked me if I had thought to get some breakfast at Braum’s. I confessed that I had for me but not him. I defended myself by saying that I had tried to call. But I felt terrible. The differences in our approach to a stressful day could not have been made more clear. Fortunately, he was in a charitable mood.

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On Wednesdays, my husband and I have bell choir practice while the children have choir practice. When bell choir is done, the children then have chime choir practice. My husband is the director of the chime choir and the oldest two kids are in it.

Hal is too young so he and I usually hang around the church or go home early or if the lady that watches him during bell choir wants to hang around, I sometimes run errands while he watches a movie.

This evening, we had just said good-bye to the lady and were lollygagging around in the hallway.

“Mommy? Where’s Bubba?”

“He’s in chime choir.”

“Where’s Daddy?”

“He’s with the kids in chime choir. You know that, honey.”

“When are you going to be in with the kids?”

“Hal, it sounds an awful lot like you are saying, ‘Hey, Mommy. I really don’t want to hang out with you. When are you going to take over for Daddy so I can spend time with him instead of you?'”

“I am saying that.”

Tact is not one of Hal’s virtues. I grabbed him in a bear hug and mussed up his hair, saying, “Thanks a lot kid!”

He laughed and pulled away and then tried to get me to carry him. After what you said, boy?! I think you can walk.