Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Diffuse

Part of my job as a mom is to clean up other people's messes. Over the years, I have cleaned up a lot of them. I'm always cleaning up after the kids, for sure. But every so often I find myself cleaning up the messes that other people make. Not just the physical ones either. Sometimes there are bigger messes than a roll of paper towels and a bottle of cleaner can fix. Yet I find myself following behind, picking up the pieces. I'm like the social equivalent of a trained bomb diffuser. And I wonder why I do that.

Why do I try to fix things? I guess there really is no good answer for it, other than I am being a good friend. I see people that I care about mess things up, and I feel like somehow it is my job to help them put things back right. I've been burned before, more than once. Usually, the people who created the mess in the first place don't even know that I bothered to clean it up for them. They just think that things magically worked out somehow.

Sometimes they ask me for help. And yes, sometimes they just expect that I will do it. And usually, I do. Okay, almost always I do. In fact, I'd be hard pressed to think of a time when I didn't.

There is a word in the dictionary that I say a thousand times a day, yet can't seem to understand in my own world. No. I think that it's just one of those unchangeable personality traits. I'm a fixer. It's what I do. I just wish that sometimes I wasn't.

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