My alarm had not yet gone off and I was awakened to the rustling of the covers as my wife slipped out of bed beating me to the morning shower just a few minutes shy of my morning routine. I am no more entitled to be first, but I will admit I like being first into the shower as it feels to me somewhat like getiing into cool covers in bed at night even when I seek warmth. It is refreshing to feel the heat creep upon me as opposed to the existing steam of being second in line.
Since I had a few minutes prior to my turn, I ventured downstairs to pour my self a cup of coffee as I like to let it stand for a few minutes as I am not the "scalding hot' type of guy when trying to awaken. I just want to drink it warm, quick, and keep going. Upon opening the cupboard, I was startled by the cascade of cups that had started to fall upon opening the door. We have alot of cups as kids never recycle a glass, so once we are blessed with a complete cycle of the dishwasher, we often find the cupboard filled to capacity often with one or two cups precariously shoved in like passengers on a Japanese subway car. Sadly the one that chose to make its' getaway was my favorite glass; a gift from a friend that I loved as it was perfect for holding a tall glass of ice and a complete can of soda. It was a frosted green color with ridges alongside making it easy to grasp even with its' larger than average girth. It now lay in shards scattered about the counter and floor and among my bare feet.
I tiptoed through the pieces like walking through a minefield until I was able to retrieve the dustpan and hand broom, and cleaned the mess thankfully less disturbed than I thought I would be. In the past, this type of incident could have easily derailed my day, even though trivial, but I noticed I was able to maintain composure and diligently pick up the mess, and suprisingly without seeking blame or vengeance.
Coffee mug in hand, I poured my French vanilla creamer as I caught a glance out my kitchen window to notice that not only had a varmit sought my garbage can as his diner of choice last night, but the cans upon tumbling had taken out two of our mum's in the cascade. Two cans, two planters and some random garbage and a half eaten biscuit lay in the driveway between my door and the car which I was now going to have to tend to prior to taking my son to school. As I shook my head in a "are you kidding me?" sort of fashion, I was still able to stay calm even in the face of escalating inconvenient circumstances. Strike two.
After making my way to the shower, the awareness that the kids were awake was punctuated by their taunts of one another causing me to rapidly seek the solace of my couch and a few minutes of the news before having to make their lunches. The teasing escalated and seemed to increase in volume, yet it was only my shields wearing thin and dropping. My wife intercepted the "enough is enough" speech sparing the strike three that usually meant that "Mt. Dad" was about to erupt.
Lunches packed, kids screaming fading, my son sensed perhaps through my quietness that I really was "white knuckling it", and seemed to become rather accomodating and not needing the nudges typical to get him out the door. Backpack and lunchbox in hand, we made it out the door and into the SUV. I helped him in, closed the door, and moved to my door noticing my glove box open, ashtray open, console open, belongings strewn about, and my expensive GPS and money missing from the dash. Strike three...
I found that I just sat there in silence, and just exhaled. I noticed that I did not "blow" even after realizing I had been robbed, but I also realized that I did not feel "normal". Acceptance would be a good word, but also frustration was the wrapper on the situation. I was very aware I was upset, but was going to be okay, but felt temporarily defeated. Like the guy who got a wedgie from the bully, and just decided to walk home with the wedgie remaining wedged as a sign of succumbing to the situation.
I backed out of the drive and got my son to school minutes later. Still shocked as to how my morning was going, I sat quietly and just stared. Calm, but staring ahead in silence, I felt a presence to my right, and my son had unfastened his seatbelt, and leaned forward between the seats and said, "Dad, I love you!", kissed me on the temple and gave me a hug. Usually it is the adult "kissing the boo-boo", but I was glad to allow my son to take on the responsibility. His kiss was like an etch-a-sketch being shaken allowing me to start the day over and with a new perspective of what is important.
I realize now that I can choose how long I wish to hold onto the random circumstances that occur in life and label them into becoming catastrophic. Being a "victim" is a perspective in this instance I can cling to or shed at will. I reflected as I was looking at my "losses" and was reminded of hearing of a friends' day yesterday where she was lamenting not only losing one, but both parents on the exact same date over the years and that she was really missing her family, to where mine was safe and a phone call away. My desire for retribution was not going to bring back my belongings or further punish the perpetrator, and playing the events over and over just allowed them to keep happening to me. I am thankful that I was able to remain "intact", but that there was a "lifeguard on duty" as my son's gesture arrived at the perfect time, in the perfect capacity to remind me of what is truly important; that I have alot, and life is still pretty good. It is the storms that show us where the leaks are, and after this rain, I see where I can use a few patches. I am just thankful that my son was there to patch my leak before I allowed my roof to cave in.