Engaging Each Day with Action Words

Contrast. — X vs. Y and our new waterfront property.

on January 31, 2013

(Please note: I know that I use the opposite letter to describe the chromosome of the boy child and girl child. It is intentional and on purpose. It is our secret code and makes it so much easier for the best friend/partner/hubby and I to text about the kiddos. I know it drives my intellectual type friends crazy…it keeps them on their toes…which makes me giggle just a little. I don’t usually explain this…but for this little ditty, it makes a difference.)

I have always wanted waterfront property. I realize the role that bodies of water play in my life and how … water…is just good for my soul. The ocean. The waves. The movement. The sounds. A boat on the lake. A tube on the river. A dock, a canoe and a paddle…these describe my favorite places and spaces. My refuge hideaways. My escapes.

The best friend/partner/hubby and I have often talked about making this happen. Buying a place on the lake or a rental property at the beach. We’ve looked at places. Made plans in our heads and dreamy places conversations.

Sigh. … Someday.

Who knew that someday would come so quickly?! Last night we took the plunge and realized our dream of waterfront property!

Ok. It was really a gift. Given to us by…

Mother Nature. Yeah, our front yard is seriously flooded. And not in a good, we live on a lake kind of way. But in a, “Oh My Goodness, Babe! You need to come and see this!!!” kind of way.

This is the river across our driveway…the picture really does not begin to describe this scene. Not at all. 

And not just flooded, but F.L.O.O.D.E.D. There is a lake, yes, but there is also a rushing river going across our driveway. That is what actually led to my discovery of this. I walked past the front door and it was the noise of the rushing water that caught my attention, that made me stop and look out the window. What is that? I looked outside to discover water about 20 feet from our front door and a R.I.V.E.R. rushing across our driveway.

Now, it is also important to this story to know that we live…no.where. … wait, one more time… NO. WHERE. … near any body of water. This is just the result of snow melt and rainfall that has run down the hills and into the low spot of our yard flowing into some drain pipes.

The best friend/partner/hubby responded to my call. We found some flashlights, the one umbrella we could find, got into our boats boots and headed out to investigate.

Each in our own way…

The best friend/partner/hubby couldn’t see all that he wanted to see, so he randomly hopped in his car, and crossed the “river runs through it” so he could shine his headlights in different places. He checked out the house to make sure things were working as they should. He marveled at the sheer amount of water and stood amazed watching it. He shared concern over his landscaping that he has worked so hard on, and said things like, “that is going to be a mess to clean up.” Overall, he was impressed, but not overly concerned, saying things like, “Well, there’s nothing we can really do.” I did notice that he checked a few times, I think convincing himself that it wouldn’t make it all the way to the house.

In comparison, X was beside himself with excitement. He ran outside, no coat, tennis shoes, too fast to stay under the umbrella and exclaimed over and over, “This is so cool! This is unbelievable! This is Un. Be. Leeeve. Able!” Did I mention over and over?! (He is loud on a regular basis…loud to the point that we have wondered out loud if we need to get his hearing checked…but then decided that he is just L.O.U.D., little and likes to be heard.) He jumped around outside, so excited and was desperate to ‘splash around’ in it. But even he was impressed with the movement of water and stayed to the edges.

He did egg me on to ‘triple dog dare’ him to put his finger in the water. With that, X “created a slight breach of etiquette by skipping the triple dare and going right for the throat!” But I obliged and he did indeed put his finger in what he was now calling ‘crocodile lake’ as he does with any random body of water. (Thanks to years of Dora the Explorer…it seems Dora and her buddies were always trying to get across crocodile-infested lakes! Sounds dangerous to this Momma!) X is pretty easy. Like his Daddy. Full of life and excitement, curiosity, little concern … just ready for (fill in the blank).

In contrast, I put on my boots, grabbed the flashlight and umbrella and walked up to the edge of the water. It was impressive to say the least. I walked around to the back of the house to see what kind of damage could be there… I checked out the entrance to the crawl space to see if water was collecting, less really about the water, more really about the things I keep stored in that little space–I admit, it was about the stuff on that one. I investigated the river and looked at the trees and bushes to see if they would make it in their new environmental conditions.

I recognized that my investigations were with less excitement and curiosity than the boys. Mine were with an eye for how could this go wrong? How bad could this get? What do I need to try to save? I would have been more concerned if the best friend/partner/hubby were more concerned, but after a while he didn’t seem to be, so I tried not to be.

Similarly..And then there was Y. My sweet Y. My girl child who is more like me than we would all like to admit. My fretter. My worrier. She obviously comes by that naturally. Unlike the younger boy-child, her first response was not one of excitement. Her first comment was, “are we going to be ok?! What do you mean, flash flood?!” I reassured her, of course, and made sure that I made light of the whole situation. I have to remember to be mindful not to let her hear any concern in my voice, as she projects any worry that she perceives that I might have. She did venture outside with me. We checked it out a little together. She wanted to stay under the umbrella; she was excited about it, but was much more reserved and a little more concerned than her younger brother.

Maybe it is because she is older. Maybe it is because she is more aware. Maybe it is because she pays attention to so much. Maybe it is because she’s a girl. I think it is because she is…just like her Momma.

It was a good reminder for me. Just how much like me she really is. How she sees the world. How her worries work. How her feelings are made or hurt. How the drama of a situation can be simply too much, self-created or not. How she frets and looks to others for comfort and reassurance.

I know how all of this feels. Just like me, she can’t help it. She can’t change her response to being tired, to being overwhelmed, to being worried, to being scared. That is just how it is, how she responds. Her DNA. And instead of getting frustrated with her, I need to remember this and give her what I know helps me. Because it will help her. Patience. Calm. Humor. Lightness.

For the record and no one really needs to know this, but I did get up several times last night just to make sure we weren’t going to need a boat, just in case. That’s what I do. I don’t think that will change anytime soon either. It has been 40 years in the making. It might just be my DNA, too.

Now, I’m just waiting for the sun to come up to make plans for where to build the dock.


3 responses to “Contrast. — X vs. Y and our new waterfront property.

  1. Lead Our Lives says:

    We must live in the same general vicinity…amazing water here! What a fun story!

  2. Jan says:

    All this for a memory! 🙂 Love!!

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