Tuesday, April 26, 2011

It Could Be Worse

Some days things don't go according to plan.  I mean, who plans for their 5-year old to throw up all day on Easter Sunday and then run a fever for the next two days?  Who plans for little black ants to find their way under the back door and into the dining room in an endless stream?  Who plans for their basement storage room and guest room to get really wet because it just won't stop raining?  Not me!  These are not things that I plan for or welcome, but when they happen - even when they happen all at once - I realize it could be worse.  And I'm pretty good at thinking of worse things that could happen...

  • Sadie is very pleasant and self-sufficient when she's sick.  She is kind and mild.  She takes care of what needs to be done and then lays down and falls asleep.  Oh sure, we've read her books and snuggled and she knows we're willing to help her however we can, but she is perfectly content to lie on the floor with her blankets and pillows and nap.  She never complains when she is sick.  Ever.  Only when you ask how she's feeling and she sweetly says, "Not very good," do you realize that she feels crummy.  IN CONTRAST, I have a couple of kids (each of whom I love dearly, make no mistake) who are not so low-maintenance when they don't feel well.  Moaning and complaining, they make their presence known and want me to be at their beck and call at every given moment.  They fight sleep and spend the day feeling terribly sorry for themselves.   At least, this time around, it's not one of them!  And at least the illness is relatively mild and she's getting better.
  • Ants are not my favorite creatures.  They are hard to get rid of and so small that it's hard to pinpoint just where they are getting in.  However, they are relatively harmless.  I understand that their home has probably been flooded and they are just looking for somewhere dry.  As much as I dislike them coming into my home in large numbers, I can think of a whole bunch of other bugs/spiders/creatures that are much worse.  And believe me, we've had worse.  I've got a pretty good handle on the ant problem and hopefully they are realizing the lack of hospitality that awaits them here so they will go somewhere else.
  • Due to the massive amounts of rainfall we've had and will yet have over the next couple of days, we're getting water in our basement.  There is a corner in the guest bedroom that is pretty wet, but otherwise it is contained to our storage room.  Fortunately everything is now up on blocks and safe from the streams of water.  We've lost a couple of boxes, but we discovered the problem before the contents of those boxes were ruined.  I've seen water damage before.  I've seen basements where they lost everything because the water was two feet deep.  We've got a few puddles down there, but nothing like that.  And we discovered it while Jeff was still home this morning so he was able to clean things up and place towels in strategic locations to help absorb the water that will certainly find its way in until the rain stops.  Now we'll know where the concrete walls need to be patched to hopefully prevent this from happening again in the future.  We're all feeling quite water logged, but my grass is a lush green carpet and the flowers and trees are beautiful.  We're on the edge of the band of storms so what we're getting is pretty mild compared to other locations.  
In the Reader's Digest, I read an article about luck.  One thing I learned from the article is that lucky people aren't necessarily more lucky than anyone else -- it's just that they can usually think of something worse that could have happened so they view their circumstances as lucky in comparison.  It's called "counter-factual" thinking.  That's how I think.  In fact, as I write this I'm thinking of some of the really big things that some people are going through.  These little annoyances I'm experiencing are nothing when compared to the political unrest, fear, natural disasters, devastating illnesses and loss - or worse - that too many people deal with on a daily basis.  It makes me feel pretty lucky {blessed is a better word} and really helps put things into perspective.

Things could always be worse! 


Lori said...

Great attitude!!!! I feel lucky/blessed too. Good luck with the sick child/ants/flood!

Aaron & Nancy said...

I couldn't agree more. Our attitude determines so much about who we are and how we handle things. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to remember that when we go through trials! You seem to do a pretty good job of remembering!