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My Professional Background - Once upon a time, I wanted to be a motivational speaker. Actually, I was a professional motivational speaker for about 5 years.:
Bat out of Birmingham

These past few weeks here in our corporate apartment in Birmingham, Alabama have been challenging to say the least. Brian began his new routine at a regular, 8-5 job for the first time in our marriage. And please believe me, neither of us is complaining. Brian is home every night, and I’m pretty sure the greatest hazards facing him in this particular career field are paper cuts and carpal tunnel.

What has been most challenging for me is the period between 7:30 a.m. and 5:45 p.m. where I have two sets of eyeballs staring at me like I’m supposed to know how to entertain them all day every day.

Do I LOOK like Chuck E Cheese’s? 

Don’t answer that.

My point is that it is actually really hard to entertain children all day. It’s WORK. More work than I ever imagined. And so I have realized that, like a “real” job, I have to structure our day so we’re not all climbing the walls by the time daddy gets home.

Although we’ve had our share of trying moments, we have finally fallen into a daily routine that we enjoy. One of my absolute favorite parts of the day is the time I get to spend with JJ during Averi’s 2-hour nap. As soon as she is in bed, I make myself a cup of hot chocolate while JJ pulls out our favorite game, The Fruit of the Spirit Bible Card Game. It plays just like Crazy Eights, so it’s easy for a 4-year-old.

Bat out of Birmingham

We hop in my bed with the cards, lots of pillows, blankets, and my Pandora Christmas station. Yes, I realize it’s still just the middle of November.

Don’t hate.

JJ loves to put his face on the bed while I deal the cards because he likes it when the cards hit him in the nose.

Bat out of Birmingham

Another favorite activity of his is to steal my phone while I’m shuffling cards so he can snap photos of me while I’m still in my pajamas at 2 p.m.

Bat out of Birmingham

The best part of this game (and I’m sick that I can’t find it for sale anywhere online) is that it gives me the opportunity to constantly repeat the same 9 words from Galatians 5:22-23: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. When Brian and I discipline our children, we try to do so using biblical terminology. In other words if one of our children grabs a toy from the other one without asking, we might say, “Was that kind?” or “Were you being patient?” If they continually disobey, we say, “We need to use . . . “, and they’ll say in unison, “SELF-CONTROL!”

And they say that at the loudest possible decibel level.

Baby steps, y’all.

So, for the past several weeks, JJ and I have played this game and repeatedly used these words that are so very difficult for a child to grasp. How do you explain patience/forbearance to a 4-year-old?

Or, for that matter, to a 33-year-old?

So fast-forward to last night after dinner at one of my favorite places, Schlotzsky’s. Side note: Their jalapeño cheese bread is responsible for at least 5 pounds of this “baby weight.” Since Brian met us out after work, we had two cars. Brian drove the kids back home in the van while I took his truck. This is an important detail only because my mom will inevitably ask me at the end of this story if the kids were in the car with me.

With my Christmas music blaring, I hopped onto Highway 280 here in Birmingham during rush hour. And I know that every city has their traffic, and we chose to live in Birmingham, and yadda, yadda, yadda. But, y’all. This road is ridiculous. Basically, NO ONE knows how to drive on it. I’ve seen no less than a dozen accidents on this one particular road since we arrived on November 1. It’s insane.

So there I was minding my own business, cruising at 15 in a 55, and singing some O Holy Night when this . . . (choosing my words carefully here) INDIVIDUAL decided to cut me off so quickly that I had to slam on my breaks.

Keep in mind that I’m 5 months pregnant, and this is NOT a comfortable scenario with a seat belt and a belly full of jalapeño bread. I LAID on the horn for a good 2-3 seconds to signal my displeasure with his decision to drive like an . . . INDIVIDUAL.

Like a bat out of you-know-where.

Apparently, while I was laying on the horn, I simultaneously laid on my phone. And those of you who have an iPhone know that the home button, when held down, activates Siri. Siri, for those who don’t know, is the voice in my phone who understands my voice and then answers my questions. Out loud.

Obviously, that is not a technical explanation from Apple.

So, unbeknownst to me, Siri heard what I had to say to that individual who cut me off so rudely. I didn’t know until I heard a muffled voice say, “Just doing my job.”

I found my phone under my leg and picked it up to find this on my screen:

Bat out of Birmingham

My first thought was to laugh at myself pretty hysterically.

My second thought was to pat myself on the back for how tame I was in such a tense moment. I mean, I was definitely thinking something MUCH worse than “jerk.”

My third thought was to call Brian to tell him about it.

My fourth thought was that I have an idea for a blog post.

My fifth thought was that I was glad the kids didn’t hear me. Last thing I need is for them to start calling people jerks.

And my SIXTH thought was this: “Maybe I need to use some . . . SELF CONTROL.”

So waaaaaaaaay down in my thought process was this Fruit of the Spirit that I have so been preaching to our children no less than 3,700 times a day. It really just goes to show that there is no job as rewarding or as humbling as this motherhood thing.

Can y’all identify? Have you ever caught yourself yelling at your children, “STOP YELLING!!!”

That one gets me every time.

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Comments to "Bat out of Birmingham"

  1. Dona

    November 20, 2014

    Oh, girl! Great story! Yeah, I’ve got a story. When my oldest daughter was 2 and her sister was a newborn, we found ourselves living with my mom, aka grandma. Her favorite word (my mom, that is) was the ‘sh’ work for a bowel movement. OK? So one day, 2 year old walks by a chair in the kitchen and accidentally knocks one of her little sweaters on the floor. She turns to pick it up and says, “well, sh..”!! Ack! My mom cleaned up her act until we were out on our own again!! But we still laugh about it, even now when my mom has been gone over 20 years. Oh, and just for your FYI, we are all Christians now and none of us use that word! Dona

  2. G-Man

    November 20, 2014

    Katy,
    That is the very reason I have a cross hanging from the mirror in my truck. It’s a reminder to me of how I should respond in those very situations. That way, I won’t blow my horn or say things out loud, even to myself, that are, shall we say, not “kind”. It helps me have “self-control and patience” in those situations.

    Then again, you KNOW that I have ALWAYS been a tower of kindness, self-control, and patience. 😉

    • Katy in a Corner

      November 23, 2014

      Dad, I think that cross has come in handy for you most definitely. In fact, I believe you have gone in the other direction. Instead of having road rage yourself, you incite road rage in others by driving under the speed limit in the fast lane on the interstate. 😉

  3. Karmen

    November 20, 2014

    This is sooooooo true! Motherhood humbles you instantly all. the. time. Just the other day I had to nastily yell at my teenager for nastily yelling at me. Did I just type “had”? Wow. I need help. God knows how to keep us on our knees crying out to Him.
    Karmen recently posted…Horsing AroundMy Profile

    • Katy in a Corner

      November 23, 2014

      Oh, Karmen. So so so true. Humility does NOT come easy. Thank God for the gift of the Holy Spirit!

  4. Kelcie

    November 20, 2014

    Thank you for the hysterical laughter in front of people who had no idea what I was reading. I think we have all had Siri responses that you are both laughing at and secretly trying to practice kindness and patience with {if that even applies to technology}. Or maybe I just hit Siri on accident more than the rest of people.
    Kelcie recently posted…The Big Kitchen Remodel {and reading the end of the book before the beginning}My Profile

    • Katy in a Corner

      November 23, 2014

      I think Siri is onto us, Kelcie. Big Brother kind of stuff. I’m not a conspiracy theorist, but I think someone is keeping tabs on us bloggers.

  5. Kelly A

    November 20, 2014

    Welcome to the club, girlfriend. I have missed getting to read you! And Congrats! We’ll call it Sisterhood of the Moms in Process.

    • Katy in a Corner

      November 23, 2014

      I love that, Kelly! We are certainly in process. Thanks for your comment. Hope to get to meet you face to face in the very near future. XOXO

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