Sunday, November 05, 2006

Walking Toward the Brink

I wanted to write a second post today, because the other one was really done at 2 am last night, which I didn't really think counted as 'Sunday'.

I am feeling a lot of things that I don't want to feel right now. I want to escape. I want to get everything out. Maybe if I spew every random thought out on to the keyboard I'll be able to get my mind organized enough to sleep.

BigDaddy has been training as a truck driver since August. Yesterday we dropped him off at the yard so that he could begin his first solo route today. I was pretty annoyed at him when we left him. Our checking account will most likely be extremely overdrawn this week. That always makes me testy. I really like to blame things on everyone else, so I figure that this is all BigDaddy's fault. He decided to switch companies mid-training, so we lost income over that. He decided to sit home all this week because he had his concealed weapons permit class on Saturday. He could've easily worked Monday through Friday and been back in plenty of time, but he didn't. His rationale was that he wouldn't get paid in time to help our checking account out, so why did it matter? Um, hello, what about NEXT week, when we don't have any income from this week?

I was also annoyed because I figured that if he was going to sit home all week, he should take care of the house. He did do the laundry, and he took care of some car problems. However, he left me with this fun mess:


I made the picture small on purpose, but it looks much worse in real life. And this is only one surface in the house. I won't show you the rest of the house. But just imagine this type of mess throughout the entire apartment. Since BigDaddy was home this week, I could've easily passed the kids off to him in the evenings and taken care of the housework myself. But I didn't. So I'm at fault too. But I am/was still annoyed at BigDaddy over it.

The Check Engine light on our car has been on at least since April. We drove all the way from Houston to Utah with it on (and got 33 mpg the whole way), so we've been ignoring it. We've known since last April that we need two new oxygen sensors (that's the reason for the 'check engine' light). $400 worth of oxygen sensors, to be exact. The car seemd to be fine without them, so we weren't too worried. However, yesterday our car decided to present some fun new symptoms. It's "missing" pretty badly, and we got a horrible catalytic converter stink from it. We also now have two exciting messages on the little dashboard display: "Drive Slowly. Urgent Service Required." and "Emissions System Service Required." The Check Engine light now flashes. I just put my arm up to block it. What am I going to do - take it to a mechanic and pay them with the overdrawn checking account? Oh, and did I mention that our car has over 100,000 miles, and we still have 2.5 more years left on the loan? That's fun.

So everything I've spewed out so far is not too bad. Today we went to my mom's house and I left my phone in the car. I knew dh would be calling, but I figured I'd just call him on the way home, which I did. He was annoyed that I didn't have my phone on me. He gets worried about us when we don't answer, and it comes out as annoyance. So we made meaningless small-talk for a minute, and then he told me that he'd been in an accident. ON HIS FIRST DAY AS A SOLO DRIVER. Obviously I was talking to him, so he was alive, which I am eternally grateful for (I know it doesn't sound like that sometimes). It was a stupid, stupid accident. It happened in the truck yard after he had stopped for the night. He was going to back in to a spot, and then he decided to pull forward into a different spot instead and something happened, and his trailer crunched another guy's fender. BigDaddy's truck is fine, but the other guy has some significant damage.

A bunch of thoughts and emotions stormed through me instantly when he told me. But I didn't say anything rude or upsetting to dh. Despite my fleeting anger and frustration, my most prominent and overwhelming emotion was empathy for BigDaddy. He is trying so hard to make something of his life and provide for us. We strongly believe that the father should be the provider and that the mother should take care of the children. He is trying to make that happen for our family. And now this. How must it have made him feel to have to call me up and tell me what happened?

This should not have happened to BigDaddy. He is one of the most capable people I know. He can master nearly any academic subject. He can make anything, fix anything. He has risen to leadership positions or prominence in every job he has ever had (and he has had MANY). He was the best student in his trucking class. He learned the shifting patterns quickly, and could back and parallel park his truck and trailer on the first try. I cannot even parallel park our mid-size car. BigDaddy can do anything. He does not "crunch fenders".

Here's an example of BigDaddy's capabilities. He decided he wanted to make segmented wooden bowls. He bought all the tools and equipment he needed (we won't even go into the financial impact of that), and these are his FIRST ATTEMPTS.

segmented bowls

segmented bowls

segmented bowls

Again, those are his FIRST attempts. He thinks they look awful because they're not 100% geometrically perfect. I think they are absolutely gorgeous, and I am awed at his skill. I realize that trucking is not the same skill as woodworking, but this is the level of skill BigDaddy has for everything he tries. Trucking is no exception. That's why I say that this little accident should not have happened.

BigDaddy said he had a bad feeling about this trip from the beginning. He says he feels like he needs to be around for our boys. He is taking this as a sign. I felt sick when he first mentioned working as a trucker. I thought it was just another one of his ideas that would last a week or two and then be over. But it wasn't. He actually went and signed up, and within a week or two, he was gone. Then I realized how much I liked it. When we're together, it's like two hens pecking each other to death. At least that's how I feel. I assume he feels the same way. We have a hope for a better relationship, but right now we're just not seeing it happen. So when he said he was thinking about whether or not to continue as a trucker, I felt a mix of emotions. I want a chance to be out on my own for a while. We got married while I was a sophomore in college, so I've never really been on my own. I have completely lost myself. I don't know who I am any more. I am a mother. I am a pseudo-wife. I am an engineer. But those are all roles that I am in for the benefit of other people. But what about "me"? Where has "me" gone? I thought that with BigDaddy gone all the time, maybe it would be easier for me to figure this out.

I realize that this is not a big deal. No one is hurt; no one is dead. No one is even fired yet (we'll see tomorrow though). It's just that so many little stupid things have been building up for so long, and this fender-bender finally released some emotion. My issues are so incredibly petty and inconsequential compared to others'. I have so many friends whose babies have died. Babies die, children die, spouses die, people get sick and die. People lose their lives spiritually speaking. How can I be this incredibly pathetic over some relatively minor financial, relationship, and job stress?

I think I'll actually feel quite good in the morning. I have a lot of faith. I've always been very strong in my faith. I know that obedience to the commandments will bring me blessings. I know that though my trials are small, I will be given the strength to bear them. I know that things will look better soon. I know that I have the Lord with me through everything. How people get through any trial without the gospel, I do not know. As I was driving, little scriptures came to my mind and comforted me. More than any specific verse, it was just a feeling of comfort, but here are a few that I thought of and that I'll leave with you.

John 14:18 - I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.

Matthew 11:30 - For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

Mosiah 24:13-15
13 And it came to pass that the voice of the Lord came to them in their afflictions, saying: Lift up your heads and be of good comfort, for I know of the covenant which ye have made unto me; and I will covenant with my people and deliver them out of bondage.
14 And I will also ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders, that even you cannot feel them upon your backs, even while you are in bondage; and this will I do that ye may stand as witnesses for me hereafter, and that ye may know of a surety that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions.
15 And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon Alma and his brethren were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord.


Jill - GlossyVeneer said...

The segmented bowls are beautiful. You should set-up shop online and sell those! Maybe on or something.

ashley said...

ahhh ... i'm sorry it's been rough.

Katie said...

Thanks (both). I am doing much better now. That's either because 1 - I hide my feelings, or 2 - I really am doing better!! Hopefully it's #2, lol :-)