Tuesday, December 8, 2009

living up to the name

Every now and then my kids prove that I was right when I chose the name of my blog. 

Today it was LB.

Not that anyone who knows us would be shocked by the news that she might be just a little like me!

Growing up my Daddy was constantly telling me to pay attention to what I was doing.

Jennifer, the cup wouldn't have fallen off of the counter and spilled if you had just been looking where you were putting it.

Jennifer, please finish what you were doing before you start doing something else!

Jennifer, PAY ATTENTION!!!!

This afternoon, I picked LB and her friend L up from their dance class and drove across the street to L's Granny's house to drop her off.  When LB closed the van door, somehow she managed to close the rubber ball of her baton into the door.  I tried opening the door from the inside and then from the outside and it wouldn't even budge.

Oh, boy!

It only took me a moment to completely panic ... I could see a body shop involved in removing the baton from the door.  I could also see a van flooded with rain water since we had storms predicted all night and I don't have a garage where I could park the van.

I called Ronnie, who suggested that I call my youngest brother who works for a local tire store.  He was busy at the moment so I called and talked to both of my parents.  Mama quickly passed me off to Daddy who had a few suggestions, but I decided to wait for Philip to call back.

It turns out this was a good plan.  He only works about 5 minutes from my house and suggested that I bring the van to them.  Not only did a couple of the guys he works with figure out how to remove the baton without damaging the van door, we even provided them with a little comic relief for the end of their work day.  It took them less than 5 minutes to figure out that they could cut the rubber end and pull it off of the baton which would then allow them to pull the metal part back inside the van and thus out of the door.  LB wasn't happy to have to sacrifice her baton, but she knew better than to complain too much!

Part of me wanted to rant and rave at LB before I knew that the problem wasn't going to cost me anything except a new baton, and I will admit to a few annoyed words said during my moments of panic, but I managed to basically hold my temper, which is really a good thing since I began thinking about similar mistakes I've made. 

One in particular comes to mind.  When I was 15 or 16 I managed to lock every set of keys our family owned to one particular vehicle, inside said vehicle.  It wouldn't have been so bad except that the entire family was busy with a fund raiser for our high school football team and I was kind of the runner for the day.  Fortunately, one of the people there asked one of their police officer friends to pop the lock for me.  I am quite certain that my Daddy would have had something to say about it except that he was too busy to deal with it.

I shared this story with my little girl tonight.  Partially because I wanted to make sure that she knew I'm not angry at her and partially because I want her to recognize that we are all human and we all make mistakes, but that doesn't mean that we can't try really hard to avoid them! 

It is funny that thinking about this today has made me realize that I still need to listen to my Daddy's advice. (I'm sure Mama was saying the same things, but for some reason, Daddy's voice stands out when I think about this subject.) I still could do better when it comes to paying attention to details and completing one task before moving on to another.  I especially have trouble with that particular piece of advice, only now it is coming from my husband and not my Daddy!

I can only hope that LB learns these lessons better than I have.


Rie said...

Aw, Jennifer, and I thought you were perfect!

Sorry, but that's hilarious! Wish I could have been a fly on the van door for that one!

Felicity said...

Isn't it amazing what strange things can happen when kids are around!