Sometimes “good” change is traumatic. Even well-organized plans lose their way. Positive thinkers can choose to throw a pity party and succumb to dwelling on what is wrong, rather than appreciating what is right.
I learned all of this and more during our move, which turned into a spectacular mess. The plan was to move from our ‘old’ house right into our ‘new’ house. Snags occurred on the new house, and it didn’t close until two days later. During that time, we were given deluxe accommodations (sarcasm) at a local motel with all of our belongings sitting in a U-Haul, and a flat bed trailer, outside.
2 Kids + 3 Cats + 3 Dogs in a ~200 square foot room for 2 days = 4 cranky family members
Positive Note: we got possession of our house and moved most of our furniture inside before it started to rain.
I like my own space. I need alone time – quiet time to myself. Without this, I allowed myself to dwell on the difficulties of the situation. I worked myself into tearful outbursts, stressed over our miserable situation. In short: if this was a stress test, I failed. Failed miserably.
Two days after we moved in, my husband couldn’t find our Yorkie, Josie, when he went to take the dogs out in the morning. We searched for several hours, inside and out, but didn’t see any sign of her. Every neighbor he had spoken to had been friendly, but reminded him that coyotes were out the night before. My husband and I cried, but not in front of the kids.
My older son decided to make signs and post them on the mailbox in case someone found her. I eyed the hawk flying overhead and didn’t see the use, but let him make the signs anyway because that’s what he needed to do.
Late that night, I got a phone call from a police officer. He asked if we were the ones that put the lost dog signs on the mailboxes. My first thought: Great. We’re going to get a ticket for posting signs. (Just call me “Negative Nellie!”)
It turns out that he found Josie early that morning and had come back to see if anyone had put up signs about a lost dog – he found my son’s signs and called us. My husband picked her up that night and she only missed 2 doses of her seizure medication.
For the umpteenth time in just a few days, I cried. But this time, it was different. Rather than wallowing in misery, I recognized my blessings. I realized that the last few days were full of rocks in our path that I turned into mountains. I finally got the message that those seemingly huge setbacks would be transformed into stories we can (maybe) laugh about in the future.
I am reminded that state of mind matters, hope promotes life, and negativity yields defeat.
So that was the Cliff’s Notes version of the last few weeks. Now for some humor. On Saturday, I spent several hours cleaning the oven in our newly acquired house. I avoid ranting on this blog, but to say I was furious at the condition of the gas range would be an understatement:
I showed the oven to my older son and asked him what he thought. “That’s gross,” he said. I explained that when he is older and gets his own place, the right thing to do is to leave it how he would like to have it left for him.
Well, hearing the word “gross,” my younger son (seven years old) ran into the kitchen. He looked inside the oven and exclaimed, “that is gross…that’s even worse than the naked people in Washington DC!”
Further questioning revealed that he had seen something on the news. I didn’t recall such an event, but a Google search yielded this story from several months ago, which must be what he saw.
I had to laugh because not everyone has an oven that’s even grosser than naked protestors! I love it when the kids are able to make me laugh even when I’m in a mood that sends my husband heading for cover!
I hope you are able to laugh your way through stress this Sunday 🙂