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Some dis-assembly required

You must first understand that the week after moving into our new house, Hubs started a world travel tour. He had business trips M-F for 6 straight weeks. This left me forging ahead with three little kids in what felt like the wilderness. We were super blessed that God led us to a church right away with incredible people who are so welcoming, loved our kids and helped get us involved in the community right away. Our church does a kids program on Wednesday nights that is most excellent. There is an optional 30 minute worship team practice before it starts, and occasionally when J is in a particularly “my career is going to be as a famous singer” mood we make every effort to get her there early for it. This particular Wednesday was just such a night. For some reason it’s incredibly hard to get there 30 minutes early. 6:15 I can do any day, but 5:45 eludes me every week. I was trying though, I was trying really hard. We were on week 4 of Hubs traveling M-F, we had overcome some transportation related obstacles (there will be a post coming soon regarding the three flat tires we got within 2 weeks of moving here). I was determined we were all done “settling in” and were officially “settled” and would be able to get into a good routine of getting places on time with little drama. I was going to get everyone fed and arrive early in their orange T shirts with their Bibles and books and smiles.

We were on track for success until B lost his mind. Well, maybe not, maybe he was just being 4, but I lost my mind. I can’t even tell you what triggered it, but for some reason I had to send him to his room for time out for the 73rd time that day. But he wasn’t going into his room, he was standing in the hallway hollerin’ and cryin’. So I started hollerin’ back because goshdarnit we were going to have a nice night before kids church! Then I realized we don’t have time for a timeout, he needs to get his shirt on and get in the car. So I tell him to hurry up and get the shirt on. He’s still standing in the hallway crying and yanking on his doorknob. I start yelling at him to stop crying (because that works every time, said no on ever) he didn’t have to do time out anymore (forget parenting principles when punctuality is on the line) and stop yanking on the doorknob, he’s going to break it. He’s still crying and yelling and yanking and I storm down that hallway, grab the doorknob and dramatically throw my shoulder against it. Like I’m going to prove a point to my 4-year old that he doesn’t know how to open a door and look how mighty I am.

Wowzer, I bounced off that door like Tigger. “I told you to stop yanking on this thing or you’d break it and now you broke it!”

“It’s not broken Mama! It’s locked!”

Didn’t I look silly. It was locked. From the inside. Now these aren’t regular push locks where you get a paper clip, straighten it out and push it through the tiny hole. These are twisty locks. They require a special flat, skinny lever to stick through a tiny hole, fit into a tiny slot, and then turn. I emphasize the difference here because despite J’s forty-thousand attempts to explain to me how “in the old house we just had to get a paperclip and surely there was one on the top of the doorframe and this was no big deal…” we were not getting this door unlocked. I’m sure these knobs used to have keys, and I’m sure they all resided on top of the door frame at the initial construction and I’m sure that lasted for a whole month before they fell off, got sucked up by a vacuum, wandered off in a little boy’s pocket…you get the idea. I also emphasize the skinny aspect of these fictitious keys because I’m sure many of you are thinking, “sheesh, just go get a flathead screwdriver and be done with it.”

Right. That thought crossed my mind, along with many other thoughts, but please revisit the necessary requirement of the paperclip and now picture a flathead screwdriver as skinny and slender as a paperclip. NO SUCH THING EXISTS.

Fast forward ten minutes, I’ve got a flashlight in my mouth, the skinniest flat thing I could find in Hubs’ workshop, my cellphone with youtube videos pulled up of how to unlock twisty locks none of which are the same type as what I’m working with, and I’m fending off J’s sixteen-thousand comments and questions on locks and how did B do this and what shirt should he wear and WILL SHE MAKE IT TO WORSHIP PRACTICE?

Spoiler alert: she will not make it to worship practice. 

I finally threw in the towel, gave up on the orange shirts and got everyone in the car. I spent that night sitting in the church lobby watching youtube lock videos and texting Hubs all sorts of angry emojis.

When we got home from church I put everyone to bed, B in mine since his was unavailable and then spent a long FaceTime call with Hubs while we diagnosed the doorknob situation. I ended up having to get a drill and drill the lock out to push the knob through the other side. I then got B out of my bed and very unceremoniously dumped him into his own. I pulled the door shut, or as shut as it would go without a knob, and sat down for the first time in about 12 years. Who do you think popped out after bedtime? One guess…yes, B.

“Hey, Mommy?”

Deep stare filled with nonverbal threats and accusations.

“It’s just, the light is kind of coming through the hole in my door and it’s kind of bright and….I’m a little scared something might come through the hole like a monster or….”

More stare.

“I love it. It’s exactly how I’ve always wanted my door. Goodnight.”

When Hubs returned at the end of the week and assessed the chewed up doorknob situation he said he thought he had a spare knob.

“No” I said. “Doorknobs are a privilege, not a right.”

I can’t remember how long B went without a knob but eventually we did put one back on because in the mornings he would sit in front of the hole peeping out and giggling. 

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