|sick faces, yet again.|
Today was one of those days. Yes, those days. You know!
Evie woke up with yet another cold (her 4th maybe?) and therefore any plans we had went out the window. I don't mind these sick days too much, because I love a needy baby, so for the most part, I was happy to just sit on the couch in pajamas, administer Tylenol and read some books.
On sick days like these, I usually don't ask too much of myself. Maybe a little dishwasher unloading, maybe some bed-making, maybe dinner or maybe not. Today I decided little Evie would have to be a big girl for at least 30 minutes and let me throw together some dinner.
I made G's favorite; meatloaf and roasted rosemary potatoes, turned on the oven and went to get Evie while it heated up. Flash forward 5 minutes later and I am standing in the kitchen holding my baby panicking as I watch giant flames burn inside the oven. What?!
Yup, we had an oven fire. My very first. And although I was able to put out the fire and the firemen down the street were not summoned, it was kind of terrifying (I had irrational visions of this home burning to the ground while we stood outside in our pajamas and watched...you know).
Needless to say dinner was postponed.
By the time the fire was out and the smoke was heading out the kitchen door, the baby was really upset because I was really upset and we were starving and G was running late at work and everything was just bad.
When he finally walked in the door I felt relieved, knowing that he would figure the whole situation out and make things better. Soon my oven was clean and polished and ready for round two and he could have been the hero of the whole day except that he forgot to mention to me that we also had tithing settlement tonight and it starts in 20 minutes, and "Sorry you just put your dinner in the oven, Jess".
By the time we made it to the church building I'd had it. A sick, fussy baby. A long day spent at home. Canceled plans. A random fire and now the dinner I'd worked hard on was sitting in the oven (turned off) getting cold and shriveled and gross. I felt defeated.
We waited in the church lobby for 30 minutes before we went in for our tithing settlement. I watched the clock and mourned the death of my nice dinner. When we finally went in, I smiled and chatted and tried to change my attitude, but I was so tired and frustrated and just over this day.
Our wonderful bishop must have been sensing it. "Can I ask you to think back on the past few weeks and tell me when you've seen the hand of the Lord in your life?" he asked. And so I thought. And I thought. And I came up with a few small things I always notice, but I probably didn't ace that test or anything.
He sent us away with two chocolate truffles and a challenge to notice all the ways in which the Lord blesses us every day. I told him I would.
As we walked out to the car and drove quietly through the fog to our home I thought about what our Bishop had told us. I thought about my long day. I realized that despite feeling sick, Evie had been pretty happy and sweet and otherwise pleasant today. She had napped and fallen asleep easily and gotten plenty of rest. I'd had some time to myself to brush my hair and put on some mascara, even though we couldn't leave the house. It had snowed that day. Beautiful, tiny drizzles that surrounded us like a snow globe and made me feel cozy. And even though there was an oven fire that derailed our evening, I'd known how to put it out and the house hadn't burned down and maybe, in reality, everything had actually gone just fine.
We drove into our driveway and unbuckled the tired baby from her car-seat. It was 8:00 now and she was ready for bed. We came inside and G took her into her bedroom to take off her coat and hat. I opened the oven and felt a burst of warmth surround me. There was my meat loaf and those roasted potatoes looking back at me. The oven was warm. The potatoes were golden brown. The food looked perfect.
G put the baby to bed and then I said a prayer over our dinner. "Thank you, Heavenly Father, for keeping my dinner warm in the oven. For still letting it taste good even though it's been sitting in there for over an hour. Thank you for caring."
And I meant every word.