Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Today was an eventful day, marked by unusual experiences. I slept badly due to a poor skittles choice late last night and so my fuel tank was starting with a deficiency.
Tempress Boone (summer service corps missioner and full-on slum sister) invited me out to do a round of visitation on her normal Wednesday route, and so we knocked on the brittle screen door of Miss Shirley and Mr. Taft. We entered into their wee 2 bedroom house. There was no air conditioner, and only one fan that the league of mercy had provided on an earlier visit. I chose a seat that was directly across from the fan, anticipating the cool breeze such a position would bring.
Unfortunately, I did not consider the fact that both Miss Shirley and Mr. Taft are heavy chain smokers, and the fan blew all that second hand smoke my way.
My eyes were swelling, my nose was expressing a strong unwillingness to inhale and I didn't want to open my mouth. Which is kinda of a problem when it comes to making polite chitchat.

So I sat there for a while, initially irritated and affronted by the way the situation had played itself out. I was grumpy. I felt ill.
Then, I stopped.
I decided to just suck it up (not literally) and get over it.
Once I stopped being so preoccupied with myself, I was able to engage my surroundings, listen in on what the folks had to say, and enjoy a good ole' down home visit. I had learned my lesson, I had pressed through and I had overcome. YeeHa!

However, the Lord saw fit to learn me extra good today, for upon my arrival at home, my husband met me with concerns about our air conditioner. Our rentman had installed a central air unit to our home, but since that day, the house temp. sits anywhere from 80-90 degrees, with the A/C running all the time. Rob did some investigating, and noticed that one of the duct joints had separated, and the glorious cool air was drifting off into the neverneverland of our crawl space.
So, he proposed a plan.
He would go under the house and reposition the duct, and it was my job to hammer it back into place. I figured he would be better at the whole hammering it into place thing (plus, I didn't want to be the one to flub it up) so I offered to go under the house.
Now, let it be known, that I made this decision based on past comments I'd heard from my husband about how clean it was down there, and how you can actually stand straight up, because our house was built on a hill and whatnot. So I guess I was expecting the Hilton down there or something, but man, was I off.
So Rob comes down with me, opens the padlock (if we don't lock it, folks be holin' up down there and gettin' all hopped up) and leads me in.

At first glance, I probably should've ditched my flip flops for proper closed toe shoes, but all common sense left me at that moment. Only sheer bravado kept me from turnin' tail back upstairs. But seriously, let my husband think I'm a chicken? under I went.

First, I was mad that it was dirty and dark and the ground was covered with questionable crunchy things. Then I was mad at Rob for painting the crawl space in such a positive light. I recoiled at the thought of bugs crawling on me, or getting nasty old cobwebs filled with bug crusties caught in my hair.
I stood there, paralyzed by my distaste at the task at hand and the level of personal involvement it would require of me...especially when I realized that the vent I had to go to was about 20 feet away and I'd have to get there on my hands and knees.

Then, I stopped.
I decided to just get down to business and enter in. Literally.
Once I stopped being so preoccupied with myself and my personal distaste, I was able to engage my surroundings, get to the duct (a la navy seal on my belly, rolling under obstacles, dodging broken glass) diagnose the problem, make the necessary repairs and seal the leak.
OH yeah baby...I had pressed through, I had overcome.
I was really really dirty, but I felt like a million bucks. I was like Arnold Schwarzenegger comin' out of that hole. The neighbourhood kids called me cool and my husband thinks I'm a superstar.

So, two long accounts. What's the point? Here's the point. Where are you at right now with God? In ministry? In your marriage? At your job? With your family? With your church?

Are you stuck in ickypoo land where you are focused on how everything is affecting you and making you feel uncomfortable, and forcing you to get down and dirty?

Take the tip-off from the smoky sister under the stairs- just get over yourself.
Press in.
Push through.
You may end up filthy dirty with old, dead bugs in your hair, but you'll have accomplished something and you'll feel really great about pushing your limits of comfortability.

Trust me!

P.S. For the sake of my sanity, no photos were taken of this incident. (!)


The Real Chiu said...

Hey - not blog related, but the music that was playing on my blog was ordinary people by john legend.
Derek Chiu

Anonymous said...

That's our Heather, always determined to get the job done no matter what it takes. Love you Aunt Donna xoxo

Anonymous said...

seriously- there are some things i can suck it up and do. especially if im sure there is a good story in there...but the whole visiting-old-ladies and gettin where its dirty with the thanks.

Anonymous said...

I was reading that and thinking that you were going to say that you encountered some sorta rodent when you were down there.

Thinking of you and Rob!
Love Meg and Jay

614:firecrest said...

umm, no...according to reliable local resources, I would be much more likely to encounter a snake or homeless man than a rodent.

michelle said...

Way to go Heather! This from your friend who freaked out if she didn't get a shower every single day at the Empress! Very impressed, especially about encountering the bugs to fix the air conditioner.

Staci said...

superheather! bug 'crusties' in her hair, levitating 4 feet off the ground, a superman shield on her chest, arms on her hips and her cape blowing in the smoke filled wind. awesome!!!