Tuesday, March 20, 2012

stifle when necessary

i have come to realize that my compulsive drive to control things - work, people, harvey, brandon, the dishwasher, EVERYTHING - is counter-productive to pursuing peace. i read this quote today and it settled so true with me:
Don’t sign on for more problems than you must. Resist the temptation to involve yourself in other people’s zones of expertise and responsibility. Monitor troublesome situations if you need to, but don’t insert yourself unless you’re running out of time and a solution is nowhere in sight. In short, stifle your inner control freak. -- Twyla Tharp 
let it go. let it go that brandon puts the plates in the spot in the dishwasher obviously designed for bowls. let it go that people at work aren't getting along so well. let it go that the patient at the hospital doesn't want me to call his family. let it go that harvey tracked dirt in the house.

i have taken on an insane idea that i know how to fix, fix, fix. and yet, the world keeps on going whether i meddle or not, and sometimes it goes far more smoothly without my input. so i have determined that part of my path to peace involves stifling my inner control freak, loud and obnoxious as she may be.

we got chicks about a week and a half ago. they started out so cute and fluffy--we would spend evenings just watching their crazy antics. their little legs seemed to have a mind of their own and would go shooting out behind them without notice, often kicking one of their nest-mates. it was adorable how they learned to roost up on their food bin and get in fights at the water dish.
all the photos of the chicks are red-tinged due to the heat lamp.
it was a somewhat impulsive decision for brandon and i (who are otherwise quite cautious folk). yes, we were actively building a coop and planning to get chicks eventually, just not that night when we went to the feed store. i thought we were "just looking" (as one of my brother's is known for regularly uttering) but it was impossible to leave these little peepers behind. it felt good to do something on a whim and we were both so excited!

now, we have had them for a while and my inner control freak is showing more. i get so annoyed that i have to change their water no less than 5 times per day because they constantly fill the reservoir with wood chips and poo. and roosting on their feeder has turned into a nuisance, as i have to throw away much of their food because it is contaminated also. not to mention harvey, who has gone from obnoxious to total nut-ball with them in the house. he sits outside the door of the room they are in whining incessantly and then follows me around the house, trying to herd me towards the "chicken room" so i will let him drool over the little nuggets.

i keep thinking "i can't wait until they are bigger and we can move them outside." when i thought this today as i trudged to the basement to refill their food dish, i realized what an awful perspective i was holding. i was ill to think that i would just wish away time and wondered if this attitude would continue when i become a parent. i vowed to stop focusing on how this time could go faster and focus instead on how i get to have these little awkward buggers in the house, listening to their cute peeps, and can start and end my day by watching their crazy antics. the chicks are really working on helping me tame that inner control freak!


mommarazzi said...

Oh Lindsey, you are so much further ahead of me in this area! My poor family.

You inspire me with your resolve.

Thank you for being so real.

There is hope for us all.

loverstreet said...

tammy, it is such a process, isn't it?
you inspire me greatly, the way you take on parenting for another round with patience and love. thanks for the encouragement!

Kathryn said...

Do not, I repeat, do not read Shawn Strannigan's recent blog about her chickens. You'll be tempted to let Harvey at 'em and cut your losses :)

FYI, there's a book called "Free Range Chicken Gardens" by Jessie Bloom (yes, that is her name!) that you might want to read.

Also, the only similarity between chickens and your own adorable children-to-be is that they both come from an egg. You'll be a wonderful parent.

loverstreet said...

kathryn, too late! i read shawn's post and immediately regretted it, and yet i couldn't stop halfway through. it filled my head with all kinds of doubts. the chicks have been relocated to a bigger welping (?) box and are now in the basement, so i am feeling far less annoyed with them. (on a sidenote, i'm also far less stuffed-up.)
i have that book--brandon bought it for me as a surprise! did you put a bug in his ear?
thanks for the encouragement. having lovely women out there that remind me i am not (too) crazy really helps. thanks!