Monday Chaos

We had to replace our air conditioning units and furnace this spring. It was time. In Texas, you go through air conditioners like people in the north go through snow shovels. We use them a lot and can go back and forth between furnace and a/c several times in one week.
This morning was one of those, “Let me turn off the air and turn on the furnace” mornings. It was 62 in the house and I knew that my kids were going to fight me on getting out from under their covers. I got out of bed, before the sun was up, and quietly crept up the stairs to turn the heat on. It revved up beautifully and quietly and…wait, what’s that smell? The smell of “newness” started pouring out of the vents. It was a smokey, greasy smell and was putrid. That wasn’t the worst part though. Suddenly the smoke detectors started screeching. And because they are hard wired into the security system I couldn’t turn them off.
My kids both jumped from their beds screaming. My son was crying and his little hands were over his ears. The dog started howling and running up and down the stairs like his tail was on fire and all I could do was stand there with my mouth hanging open.
I finally convinced the dog to go outside while the kids hid under the covers of their beds. The smoke detector finally turned off and everyone calmed down. I called the air conditioning company who assured me this was normal and fine and would not stink forever. The kids got dressed and headed out the door, I drank a gallon of coffee, and our Monday life got back on track.

Dear Lord…

I find myself praying for my kids ever more frequently. When they were babies I prayed that they would sleep through the night and that they would not die in their sleep. I prayed for fevers and ear aches to go away. I prayed for rashes to clear up and for coughs to break loose.
I still pray those prayers, except the death by sleep one because we grew out of that one when we gave up the crib. Now I have added new ones.
I pray that they would listen to their teachers while at school. I pray that they would be protected on the playground. I pray that they will only have kind and honest friends. I pray and I pray and I pray.
Sometimes my prayers for them are really prayers for myself. I pray things like,”Dear God, please make me love this child unconditionally like You do. Especially when they are squirting toothpaste in each other’s hair.”
The point is that I keep praying. I don’t know how to do this thing called “Parenting” any other way.