Fixers

The other day I got quite a surprise

Olivia and I were upstairs putting clothes away (I should say- I was putting them away;  Olivia was trying to take them all out again!).  Annie came upstairs and showed me her finger and said, “Owen broke the table and hurt my finger.”  There was a bit of blood and a scratch- nothing too bad. I assumed that Owen had moved the small Japanese table onto her finger or something… Olivia and I went downstairs a few minutes later and discovered this:

This is our antique coffee table (photo from above looking down).  It was a large wooden urn (?) used for pounding Japanese mochi (rice cakes).  It is covered with a thick piece of glass.

Owen and Annie were playing “travel” together (nice practice for the coming 9 months!), and they tried to put a big suitcase up on the table.  You can see what happened.

Well, these were smart kids!  They thought if they could fix it themselves, there would be no problems.  When I came down, all 3 large cracks had been repaired with glue sticks and scotch tape…. and 2 scratched fingers to show for it.

I wasn’t mad (I’m sure they were afraid I would be!) but we talked about why they need to call us right away when something breaks… That day, Eric called the glass man (we had had a previous break), ordered a new one, and it was delivered several days later.  In the meantime, it made a fun little resting/play spot for the kids…

That same day, I had been talking to a friend on the phone about her job.  There were a number of areas where she was not feeling content about it – some things clearly needed to change.  And I asked if she had talked to their supervisor about it.  “No… he just tries to fix everything.”

The next day, I was talking to another friend about some family problems she was dealing with.  Lo and behold!  Who was trying to fix things now?  Moi.  I had lots of solutions.  Of course, none of them were really going to “solve” the problems.  they probably felt a lot to her like — elmer’s stick glue and scotch tape on a glass coffee table.  I called her a few days later and apologized.

I love brainstorming ideas… helping people come up with options. That much, I think, can be useful. But my trying to find easy fixes is not going to help. Thank goodness for glass-makers…and, hey- our Maker.   God must chuckle sometimes at the things we try and do in order to maintain control and not get in trouble!  I’m sure to be one of His classic cases.  But He’s working with me… reminding me who to talk to right away when something breaks.

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