Calm Amongst the Chaos

Mama of 5 seeking calm in the chaos

Our family had this one huge fight we all go back and reference and retell and laugh about decades later. Like many decades later. This one was epic and while I was really young and don’t actually remember any of the details, I remember the feelings it evoked in me and I remember the story told by everyone else. I can share the different versions of each party and I can actually giggle at how dumb kids can be. To understand why my part in this family fight was so minuscule it is helpful to know I am 6 years junior (not really necessary, but info I share any chance I get) to my brother and sister who are twins. Please don’t ask me if my brother and sister twins are identical. Please don’t. And this incident either made me into an enneagram 9 or I already was one and rocking in my room. I kid, but maybe some truth to that.

I’ll set the scene.. my sister was cleaning out her room. I do believe they were teenagers at this point. She had a pile of trash and this block of wood was in it. My brother sees the block of wood and wants it. She says no, it’s hers and it is going into the trash. My brother really wants it. Well now my mom is involved and says just give him the damn block. If she didn’t say damn, she should have. Then after that not working dad got involved and the whole thing erupted into crazy town with a door getting a hole in it. We all laugh about it because of how silly it was. I think we all can agree she should have just given him the wood, but as a strong willed teen (who happens to be an enneagram 8) that kind of resolution wasn’t desired.

I actually had this happen not too long ago in our family with a certain set of siblings that are opposite sex as well. But as a mama who likes peace above ALL ELSE, I just let the one think it’s in the trash, then hand it to the other and I celebrate my success and call them all suckers.

But I think we all can agree this is kid stuff. Stupid things we dig our heels into and are willing to go world war 3 over and that’s (ANNOYING AS HELL) but to be expected and prayfully laughed about decades later.

Kid stuff. Except is it really? I am privy to several neighborhood Facebook pages and while I will say they have been extremely helpful to me on occasion, we’ve been supported in fundraisers, told the best carpet cleaners, best pediatric dentists and the best place to get the best Mexican food (haha just kidding. That thread alone will cause healthy people off cliffs, apparently people who transplant from CA are extremely disappointed in our choices of Mexican food in AZ??). So while helpful yes in many ways it’s also the best entertainment since reality TV was invented. Like the best. Unless you’re the one under attack and it’s awfully awkward. But you will see what things really upset people you thought were normal humans. I swear my kids hear me say more often then not, no you can’t do that because someone will post about it on the neighborhood page. Not because of any other reason than I don’t want a virtual slaying at my sub par parenting. Been there guys because of skate equipment on our curb. It was hideous. For real. If our dogs get out I will break out into a cold sweat thinking if a neighbor catches them before me I’ll have to deal with this on the neighborhood page.

I think you understand my point and you too know exactly what I am talking about. So back to the trash thing. In our town of Gilbert they offer this wonderful service, it’s called bulk trash pick up and a big truck comes every 6 weeks and literally picks up anything set out. It’s pretty awesome if you ask me, I’ve never lived where this was a thing and I think I can no longer live where this is not a thing. And you really realize how much we have when you drive by and see what is trash to others. This is not a Goodwill pick up, the stuff literally goes to the dump and you will see lamps, shelves, kids toys, luggage, a couch. I am serious, stuff, not trash. I am not embarrassed to say I watched an old guy put perfectly good garage plastic shelves out on his curb and I waited for him to go inside and threw those babies in my van in less than 60 seconds. They are in the playroom as we speak. But wanna know what else happens every 6 weeks? You see big trucks loaded up with all the peoples “trash”. This is a business for some folks and they literally turn our trash into an income. Guess what. This pisses people off. Are you surprised? Isn’t this child’s play? Wasn’t that your TRASH? Now you are yelling at the guy to stop going through it and to get off your property because that junk is your junk and it’s going to the junkyard. And guess what … it happened to me too. I was outside with Alfonso and Bella pulling weeds and a guy slowly rolls up on our house, bypasses our junk, because it’s literally trash and rolls on to our neighbors and I start to perk up and feel a little protective over my neighbors trash. TRASH. I get a little hardened inside and feel defensive. He says hi to me and I say hi back. I know I am a tough chick. He then asks me for water! I was like what? You are taking my neighbors trash and now are asking me for water. No. OK yes, it’s hot, yes you can have some water. I take the kids inside and get a big Harkins cup (not a 2019, I’m not Mother Theresa) and we fill it was ice and water and I have Alfonso take it to him (while I’m there, duh) and he thanks us several times and says he’ll bring back the cup. I say it’s a 2017 you’re good, keep it. And Alfonso is so proud of himself for giving him the water and I feel my heart soften back to it’s usual mushy self and wish him a good day. I am not an a-hole. Why did I start to become one over trash? Why do people complain out loud and to others about people taking stuff that is literally trash to them yet income to someone else. And these are all people who will donate to toy drives, help deliver a meal to someone in need. These aren’t animals. They are good people. We all just get a little weird over our things. Am I right? I’m trying to take deep breaths and ask myself why something is bothering me and work towards changing that. 90% of the time the thing bothering me is not so worth it. I need to save my energy for that 10% that needs it.

This post isn’t to shame anyone, it’s self reflective and wanting better for myself and my community. I want us to say I don’t need it, but if you do, take it. It’s so easy to do when we let our guards down. A community willing to do that is a community I see changing the world.

Tell me your thoughts on this topic. I’d love to hear what you think.


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