I was going to title this post "do the right thing."
Then as my thoughts came together, and the morning's events transpired, I was going to call it "if it's not broke don't fix it, but if it is, please get busy!"
Then I read Kate's post over at Momopoly, and I started to cry.
I'm having a rough morning.
I'm carrying a cross, and it's a light one. I call this kind a toothpick cross. It's so tiny that when you look at me, you probably won't even notice I'm lugging it around. But like a toothpick in a pile of toothpicks, it can be hard to pick up. And it can be very draining when it seems you're picking up this same one again and again.
Things are falling apart around here, and I mean that literally. On Saturday I was in a car accident. Don't worry, no one was injured, which is all that really matters. But my van is smashed up and in need of repair, and I spent the morning on the phone with the husband of the gal who hit me and with insurance agents.
That leads to the "do the right thing" angle. It was snowy Saturday, dangerously so. The roads were horrible, and I really had no business being out. But I had a rehearsal to get to (don't worry, I'll fill you in on the show soon!) so I ventured out. When that other car came careening through the intersection I was in the middle of, there was really no stopping it. She had hit a slippery spot, and she was driving too fast. I saw her coming, tried to accelerate, but my wheels spun and she hit me, sending me spinning 180 degrees.
When I got out of my van and saw the other driver, I was relieved. She was OK, so was I, and even better, it was someone I knew! We had gone to high school together and her husband and mine had played in the same softball league in recent years. That would make things easier.
We assured one another we were fine, found both our vehicles to be driveable, and decided no call to the police was necessary. We both knew it was her fault, but I figured I'd spare her the ticket and the points that may accompany it. (I knew this might happen - a good friend of mine was in a similar accident last winter and that's what happened to her.)
I decided to be nice.
This morning her husband called and said he was going to try to "fix things" with his insurance agent who also happened to be the best man at his wedding. He explained he planned to simply say the vehicle was parked on the street and was struck by some unknown car.
I don't do well with this sort of thing. I had no intention of participating in insurance fraud (and why should I? I had nothing to gain and something - the payment of my deductible - to lose.) I told him I was not comfortable with that idea, and that I planned to do something wild and just tell the truth.
He handled that pretty well, I guess, but he said he wanted me to wait before I called my company. I stupidly agreed, then realized after I hung up that I had no intention of doing that. I called him back and left a message on his voice mail telling him I was going to make the claim. So I did and now I'm waiting to see what happens.
It appears that if they call with a different story, I might be out the $500 deductible.
That stinks. That's the price I've paid for "being nice." I suppose the lesson is that sometimes "doing the right thing" includes following protocol that protects me rather than trying to be nice to someone else.
That's just the beginning of my toothpick collection today. The dishwasher's broke. My blow dryer shot sparks at me this morning. Last week my microwave broke, so I threw it out and got a new one. Today I found out it was covered on a repair plan and if I had called I would've received a check for $125 if they couldn't fix it.
My lap top is malfunctioning, randoming shutting itself off. The kitchen drawer fell apart the other day. The lightswitch in the bathroom wants to permanently stay in the "on" position.
My home is falling apart, and I'm frustrated, angry and sad.
The condition of my house is a really heavy cross to me. We redid the living room and my room this past year, and they are quite attractive right now. But I'd be lying if I said I was content here.
It's a "starter home" at best, and we're way past getting started. We will probably never be able to move to a larger home, and that is something I just have never been able to get over.
We have three bedrooms, no basement, only 1300 square feet. The house is not ancient, but it's no spring chicken, either. We use our family room for so many purposes; now Sophie stays in that room too, and it's insane. I don't know how we do it.
But we do. I pick up the toothpick every day, and it's exhausting sometimes. Like Kate said, people might look at me and think how great I have it. (Especially people who've never been to my house!) They look at all the blessings in my life (and there are indeed many) and they don't even know how much I suffer because of my inadequate kitchen cupboards, damaged tiles and stuffed closets.
I feel ashamed that I whine about this. But for some reason, this cross seems almost unbearable at times. I imagine that's because I've had it for years, and I don't imagine it will ever be lifted from me.
So today it's messed-up, screwed-up, broken around here. And it probably will be tomorrow, too. So I'll do my best to hang in there and not break anything else -- especially my spirit.