Tuesday, December 21, 2010
The Christmas Run-up
You have to wonder about a day that starts off by setting fire to your underpants.
I always take my underthings into the bathroom with me when I shower. It's a habit I developed when the Bug was little; she had no sense of boundaries and it was not uncommon for me to come out of my bathroom and into my bedroom, to find her sitting there wanting to discuss the latest developments in the world of Pokemon. Or perhaps to debate why she was starting to believe her dad's theory that I was, in fact, a reptile.
Yesterday morning, I accidentally grabbed two pairs of underpants; leaving one on the counter while I donned the second. My bathroom is small, and gets pretty foggy, and because Mr. gets up several hours after I do, I keep the door closed while I'm in there getting ready in the morning. As a result, I normally need to use my hair dryer to de-fog the mirror. Rather than shutting it off, while I combed and gelled my hair, I left it running -- the hair dryer is getting old and it won't re-start if I shut it off -- in the (dry) sink.
I began to smell smoke and looking down, took note that my gonch had slipped off the counter into the sink and, under the influence of the hair dryer, had commenced to smoldering. I grabbed the flaming underpants, only to realise that they were, in fact, hot. I know this may have occurred to the rest of you earlier, but it was 5:40 in the morning and not all of my neurons fire at that hour. I burned the bejeebers out of my index finger, which had the misfortune to make a connection with the then-molten waistband of my now-former underthings.
I spent much of the rest of the day attempting to create a haiku to commemorate the event.
Yeah, so that doesn't have anything to do with Christmas. I should get out of the habit of writing titles first.
I've been addressing my inner control freak in therapy lately. I recognize that my compulsive need to control those things that I can control is the direct result of not having been able to control the one thing that meant the most to me. But it goes deeper than that, and we can explore this later. For now I'll say that for the first time, I'm getting the message that "getting my control freak on" is probably not a bad thing. So there.
The problem, of course, is that I'm trying to do too much for Christmas and I'm planning, planning, planning the days running up to it and external things (weather, my husband's absence, sewing machine needles, cold-process soap curing characteristics and flaming underpants) aren't cooperating. There are times I wish I was the kind of person who could swing through Big Lots on December 23rd and buy six each of four things and hand them out with a kiss and be done with it.
Last night, I read the Gospel of Luke, which describes the nativity of Jesus in Bethlehem. I came to realise that Mary's day wasn't exactly going as planned. I'm pretty sure she didn't turn to Joseph and say, "You know, honey, let's just chill out about this whole birth plan; I'll just find a nice pile of straw, we'll pop out this kid and order a pizza. It'll be just fine."
She had lost control of everything she thought she knew; pregnant without her consent, wandering in a strange town, nowhere comfortable to have her baby, no idea what the future would hold for them, and probably pretty freaked out about this whole visitation by the Archangel Gabriel. But in the end she did end up giving birth on a pile of straw, and while there was no pizza, things did turn out just fine.
Better than just fine, in fact.
Take the Bible for what you will: the enlightened word of God or a wonderful mythology. No judgments from me, either way. But whatever else you think, there's a lot of wisdom there.
Hope your Christmas Run-Up is just fine.
Confidential to R.D.: Thank you for putting your trust in me. I can't make this not hurt for you, but I can at least warn you what's around the next corner. I'm honored that you're letting me do that. Peace.