“If I Can Just Do This….”

“Then that will make (insert problem here) better”. We have all told ourselves that when life throws a hardship upon us. Sometimes, the anwer is easy, sometimes it is hard. I think most people when it is an individual problem, they handle it like business. But, when that problem hurts someone else they love, they react entirely different and it somehow adds a sense of urgency and importance. Most people will put the ones they love first, even if it is harder for them. That is why it is called love.

I also think that in coorlation with that thought, the idea that if you solve this problem that effects your loved one, then thats all the matters. You forget about how it effects you, and you get focused on them. It is like a weird natural defense to shield your own emotions and take care of your loved ones at the same time. Sure you are fixing it for them too, but you are also putting your energies into them and the problem and ignoring yours.

It is selfless, yes. But it also does this weird masking of your feelings under the guise of “doing it for them”. Your intentions aren’t misaligned, not at all. You truly want to solve whatever it is for them, no matter what it does to you. But, you push “you” down to the bottom of the barrel, just absorbing the pain of the problem. You are also not giving your loved one a chance to help you when you are taking care of them.

I learned this the hardway with Angel. I spent a year telling myself “if I can just fix this thing for her (even if she didn’t ask for it) then I will feel better.” I also would tell myself “Ok, this one problem, then everything else will be fine”. But, it is never just the one problem and nothing more. There is always the next problem, and the one after that. Nothing is every easy, nothing is ever simple. The problems never stop coming.

Sure, the problem with a black and white solution is the easy ones to solve. I equate those to filling a sink with water. If the sink overflows, you turn off the water. You can also open the drain and let some out too. It is 2 simple solutions for a simple problem. It is black and white, problem solved. Those are the easy life problems and usually are not the ones that we get caught up in fixing.

But, take that same sink, and add 15 faucets, nine hoses which are also filling it. The hoses and the faucet are radomly turning on and off and some of the knobs and levers are broken. Most of them flow fast, and sometimes at the same time. Some are a constant slow drip. Now, nhe drain is clogging here and there, but not always. There is also 2 leaks at the bottom of the sink that is allowing water to flow onto the floor as well, and, for some reason, spider monkey screaming and jumping all over the kitchen as you try and stop the overflow and save the kitchen from flooding. Oh, the monkey isn’t doing anything, you aren’t even sure where it came from it is just adding to the confusion. That, that sink right there, is more like life.

At that point,you start asking the important questions How do I get the water to stop coming in? Which faucet do I try and turn off first? How do I get the drain. Why are there cracks? How do I fill those. Who designed this plumbing atocity. Where the hell did this monkey come from?

But, you need to stop the impending flood. You need the kitchen for you and the ones you love. You also have to accept at that point, there will be water on the floor. Your job now is to decide how much water flow can be stopped, and how to get the water off the floor. oh, and how the hell do you get the monkey out of the kitchen?

So, there you are with the idea that if you can just keep most of the water in the sink, then it will be ok. Even if you are ankle deep in the water, you are trying to stem the water coming in. So, you stop the biggest flows of water first? Right. Or maybe not. Maybe you clear the drain. No, get towels. Ok, feed the monkey. What if your shoes get wet? What if it messes up the floor. How will you afford a new floor. How will you…..

This insane and ludicrious scenario was how my brain ran for a year. I was in the kitchen, trying to cook dinner in a flood. Trying to stop the water, save the floor, clear the drain, feed the monkey, and trying not to tell Angel about the flood because I didn’t want her to worry and see the mess I was . I also didn’t give her the chance to help. I was trying to be selfless, but I was also selfish for not giving the one person I could depend on, the chance to help. I was worried about her kitchen sink as well, forgetting the same damned kitchen.ir own

I realize now, the water was never going to be fully stopped. I had to rotate between faucets, clearing drains, kinking the hoses, patching the leaks, drying the floor, and trying to get someone to come get the damned monkey. I also see, clearly, that I should have asked for more help, knowing that it was our kitchen. I also had to accept that the floor was going to be wet, but we could fix it together. I couldn’t do it alone.

I think everyone has their own kitchen leaks. I think everyone has their own crazy scenario that they play in their head. We try and hide it, because it seems like we can’t handle life and ourselves if we ask for help. Take my advice, if you have someone with a mop and a bucket ready, ask them for help. I am better now about standing in the flood and trying to just fix what I can, when I can. For me, for the people around me and even for Angel. I have learned to fix what I can, and accept what I can’t. I don’t want to be in the kitchen alone, but I can be if I need to.

Now, does anyone have any idea what spider monkeys eat? Lol

~S.L.

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