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Plumbers and Issues

Plumbers and Issues

I was counting down the minutes until the plumber arrived. He was an hour late but what's one more hour when the plumbing has been out of commission for two days?

I was glad to see him, the answer to my latest inconvenience.

The night before as we ate off paper plates and plastic cutlery, Ryan explained to our brood how fortunate we are. Despite not having full range of access to all the plumbing conveniences we are accustomed to, we live a very privileged life. Some in this world travel daily on foot for only a few gallons of dirty water that they have to carry home, he reminded. We are grateful to live how we do. 

We are aware that our plumbing issues, in the scheme of the whole big world, are non-issues. 

And yet, stress compounds when dishes are difficult to clean and laundry can't go through the wash. Showers are bird baths. Toilets are on strike. Of course, plumbing issues occur in the middle of real life. There are other stressors to contend with all while standing in a puddle in the kitchen. 

I wish my head knowledge of my privilege was heart knowledge and gratitude in times like these. Instead, I feel anxious and frustrated at the disruption. I just want a shower and clean towels. 

I posted to Instagram how I was looking forward to the arrival of the plumber. #plumbersareheros

When you have a plumbing situation all you want is a plumber to show up. 

Somehow we got saddled with a plumber from the dark side. If our plumber was a superhero which one would he be? He would be the one who might save the day but has more villain like undertones. Any superhero aficionados out there care to weigh in on what Superhero might best represent him?

He mentioned we would need a new toilet. I said, "Aw, that's too bad. Our landlord just put in a new toilet recently."

-"Really....Your landlord just put in a new toilet...from 1972? Is that right? So, this is your new 1972 toilet then?" Layer the sarcasm on really thick with your most dismissive tone when you read that.  

I got mixed up. The newer toilet was upstairs, I guess. 

He eventually wore me down. It's embarrassing but true. He continued from there with the rude, snide, even bossy. I could deflect it for awhile. He spoke harshly repeatedly and treated me like I was stupid. He even accused my two little guys who were eager to watch him work, of flushing a toy down the toilet. They did nothing to cause the trouble we were facing. Worse, he didn't actually fix anything. 

Like pipes under too much pressure can crack and spring leaks so can resolve. It was all too much in that moment. It was all the things and how he was treating me.  My eyes betrayed the rest of me and tears ended up embarrassingly on my cheeks. Once they landed there, despite how I willed the water to stop with the flowing, it refused. Now I felt on top of it all, weakness and shame. I was now more irritated with myself than with the strangely angry supervillain-ish plumber. 

I'd like to think I am tougher, but I was vulnerable and caught off guard. I needed help. When he left, I drank the soda I had chilled for him. Rebel.

Apparently our pipes are the self-fixing voodoo kind. Since the weekend, and all on their own, they corrected their waywardness. One day they are flooding the whole bathroom and part of the hall, kitchen, garage, and taking hostage every towel and even a blanket. The next they are barely showing evidence of a trickling leak. There is still something wrong but it backed way down to a manageable level. It's now low tide over here. 

We are looking for a new plumber and biding our time until the next event, knock on pipe. 

I was able to shower. My mother-in-law came by with pizzas, paper plates, and hugs. Everyone was 'Team Amie' and ready to tell that guy where to shove his plunger - in a clogged toilet, of course.  

My husband was sorry he hadn't been the one home to deal with Super Plumber The Charming. I somehow doubt his behavior would have been quite the same for my husband. Just a hunch. 

I am choosing to be gentle with myself. I let him get to me in that moment but he doesn't get any more moments. I won't multiply his treatment of me by treating myself poorly in addition. I cried. I wish I didn't, at least (especially) not in front of him, but I accept it. I accept me. I am on 'Team Amie' too.

I would handle it all differently if I could go back but I can't and I'm not mad at me. He should have been asked to leave my home long before he caused a flood.

Dishes and laundry all have much catching up to do. Time to mop up and move on.

Thanks for reading! 

Always,

Amie

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