Swimming with Sharks


Oh my gosh, I am just a few precious seconds away from spontaneous combustion.  I think I’m going to explode and it isn’t going to be pretty.

I love summer.  I do, because it’s the best season ever.  It’s warm outside, we can be at the pool or park, I don’t have to freeze my buns off every time I walk to the car, I don’t step in slush, and I don’t have to shovel snow.  I LOVE summer.  Except.  Except that I am an introvert.  And every summer, without fail, the kids are home from school and Brian has a lot less hours to work.  I love these people.  They are without a doubt my favorite people in the entire world.  They know me better than anyone, and they love me something crazy.  And the feeling is mutual.  But… I need space.  Not all the time, but definitely some of the time.  Because as much as I love my family, another item on the list of ‘things I love’ is sanity.  Mostly in the form of organization.  And in summer, organization bids adieu for its little holiday by the sea somewhere and we don’t catch a glimpse of her until she resurfaces mid-September when everyone is back in school and I have had a moment or two to catch my breath, put last years’ report cards away, and vacuum the rugs.  It’s a big hot mess here in the summer.

I do okay with it most of the time.  Alright, some of the time.  Sometimes when I see the clutter that has taken on a life of its own, I think “Well, that’s what a good family’s house looks like.  We are too busy loving each other and having fun to sweat the small stuff.”  And a part of me knows this is true.  But there is is this other part of me, the part that craves organization… She lurks like a shark in murky waters, hovering just below the surface.  Brian and the kids all know she’s down there somewhere and they hope she won’t strike.  They even swim around happily telling themselves that maybe that part of me has gone out to sea for good.  But I think that deep down, we all know she is there.  Somewhere nearby and it is only a matter of time until she appears as a ravaging beast, threatening the lives of anyone foolish enough to be in her path.  I hate that about me.

And guess what.  This morning, we should have been playing the Jaws theme in the house as a wake up call for all who reside at 4056.  I am thinking that Brian most of all would find the music a helpful alert system for what is about to go down inside our little brick ranch.  But there was no music.  Only me.  Being me.  And I think it is safe to say that today, when Brian takes the kids to church and I stay home with my pounding headache and my explosive personality, he will probably stop at McDonalds playland after church with the kids to give them all some extra time away from the house.  Delay the inevitable having to come home.  To me.   To this house.  To the lion’s den…

I wish I didn’t like order so much.  I wish I didn’t feel like there needs to be a place for everything in the house and the stuff that doesn’t have a place, well, GET RID OF IT!  I wish this intense aspect of my personality wasn’t there.  But oh, it is.  And it always has been.  I would like to think that I am getting better at it, but every time crazy me shows up, I think that maybe it’s not as ‘better’ as I had thought.

I’m sitting here, trying to think of ways to calm myself back down, to send the shark back to her hiding place under a rock so that ‘nice mommy’ can come swimming back in all her glory.  I can then beckon to the kids and sweet husband who stand on the shore, trembling in fear of what almost did them in, and I will call out from the peaceful waters that yes, once again the ocean is indeed safe for swimming.  And what are you so afraid of, anyway?   Slowly, they will venture back into the sweet waters, playing in the peaceful waves.  Before we know it, we will all be thinking how could the water ever be anything BUT lovely?   And we will all be safe and happy… until the next time.

Well, it is safe to say that by the time the troops do arrive home, there will be order in the courts once again and I will be back to the mommy they all know and love.  Heck, maybe I’ll even load them all up in the car and we can head to the pool for the afternoon. 🙂

2 thoughts on “Swimming with Sharks

  1. Thanks for this, Lis. I hate the shark in me that surfaces from time to time, usually even taking me by surprise and leaving a bloody trail behind. I’m sorry you had a rough morning. Hoping the afternoon brings some real peace.

  2. Lisa, I am so thankful for you. Thankful for your honesty, transparency, and spunky outlook on life. It is such a brave thing for you to put yourself out there like this… And what a blessing for the rest of us who have the privilege of reading it!!! Seriously. I love it…

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