the patience of Job

kids-spankLosing my patience is a funny topic because to all my friends, family I have always been Mr. Laid back. In my family (outside of my home) I have the most patience (have to dealing with those bastards) and try to mimic my grandmother who let the weight of the world roll off her shoulders and kept trucking. In my home, I tend to have more patience with the boys than my wife (of course because I am not there all day). And at my job, there is a running joke that I have the patience of Job due to the way I tend to deal with difficult customers (business line and end users). When asked how I do it, I always joke about having a house full of boys. If I can deal with them in a house with vaulted ceilings, then certainly I can deal with these frustrated users. Just walk a day with me and you’ll see why.

Lately Texass has been having an incredible heat wave. As a northern boy, it took me a while to get used to the heat. Literally so hot it makes you religious…because you know you can’t go to hell if it is hotter than Texas. Open your car after work and feels like you are standing in front of an oven full of Thanksgiving fixin’s.

I had already been frustrated this day for various reasons. I started the day waking up late. Drove for a little bit and felt I needed new brake pads…which the shop was too full to fit me in. I get to work and the streets were blocked for some convention. I am trying to merge over and got attacked by a gang of senior citizens in Crown Victorias. I escape to discover no parking and me having to pay for a lot. Worked like a Hebrew slave today on some Cognos reports, then left work to run a never-ending list of errands from not finding what I needed and traveling to 3 different stores, to prescriptions not being filled correctly.

On the way home there was a little bird in the road. As a teen I would speed up (the hell with you PETA), but as a adult I just keep my same speed. I have never hit an animal. It seemed like everytime a bird was in my path, God would send a wind to lift their wings up, so I thought today would be no different. Well this little bird must have missed the memo…thud…rest in tweet.

I get home hot, frustrated, back soaked from sweat, paranoid thinking this birds father was stalking me (still traumatized from watching Hitchcock’s The Birds when I was little). Walk through the door and see my 5yr old on the couch with an ice pack on his forehead. I ask my wife what happened, and she just shook her head. When things of this nature render her speechless it usually makes my blood boil because I know it has to be bad. I go look at my son and he looks like Haseem Rakmeen after the Holyfield fight. Ok, maybe I am exaggerating a lot…but he had a nice size cartoon knot on his head. I ask once more what in the hell happened, then he, she, heck one of em (at this point I was about to blackout and go into rage mode) told me his older brother slammed the door on him.

grumpyoldmenI suppose I have to pause and explain these brothers. My wife and I had the nerve to say we’d never have two kids in diapers and how horrible that would be, and don’t you know it happened. Back to back. They love each other to death, but couldn’t be more like night and day. I dub them the wonder twins. I joke with my wife about living with all guys because guys can fight, go at it, then be cool 10 mins later. The wonder twins, as small as 3 & 4, would go outside on the patio with chairs next to each other, and talk like Grumpy Old Men. Their bond is the funniest thing you ever want to see. Now ages 5 & 6 they STILL fight 90% of the time, but when they are just conversing, it is hilarious.

So as a parent, you often have to play Inspector Gadget because kids tend to pay attention when they aren’t supposed to (e.g. cursing while driving, smacking mom on the butt, etc). We always get on them for tattle telling about minuscule stuff, and teach them about taking care of one another. Then soon as something like this happens, it is the Usual Suspects…nobody wants to talk. I ask the 5-yr old why were they fighting, and he said, “I dunno.”

“I dunno?” I replied voice raising. “What in the hell does I dunno mean?”

Then I had to just laugh because I remember teasing my wife about her getting frustrated at them…and telling her that is just how guys are. There were other things too. My 2yr old pulled a pack off light bulbs off the table and broke on the kitchen floor, someone wrote on my office carpet with a permanent marker, somebody tagged (graffiti) my tote full of electronics in the closet, they moved all the icons on my PC desktop so I can’t find nothing (and I have serious OCD), and managed to break the leg on one of our kitchen chairs…just to name a few things. And this was a light day. Don’t get me started on the day I came home to a dent/hole in the living room wall because somebody didn’t properly strap on the Wii controller and it went flying.

If I can deal with these children terrorists daily, surely I can deal with people at work.

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One response to “the patience of Job

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