You might think that being in the septic business, EVERY day is a poopy day, I mean, how can it NOT be, right? Obviously, we take some teasing from friends and family about our industry, but to be honest there are some real perks to doing what we do. First of all, I kinda like being in this business together with my husband. We are always working towards the same goal and working together to achieve it. When I was teaching (and don’t get me wrong – I LOVED teaching…) there were times I felt like my work sometimes took away from our family. Working together now, doesn’t. I like being able to take my kids to work with me when we do perc tests and inspections. Not to mention, my office, is our home. During the summer, I am always with them – no need for sitters or day care. And, every time they have a break, I get to spend it with them. Now, we still have to conduct business, but the kids understand that Mom has to answer the phone and do paperwork during those days, but at least they are with me during these times. I love the lifestyle this work provides for me and my family. So, being in the “poop” business isn’t what makes my life poopy. I am what makes my life poopy. Let me explain…
I don’t know about you, but when my schedule gets overloaded and I feel like my “to do” list is never ending that’s when I am easily frustrated or irritated with others. The slightest change in tone from someone can flip me out. A wrong look from my child or husband can grate on my nerves. A flippant comment from a friend or loved one might make the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. And then, you know what I do? Instead of just focusing on my workload, I chew and stew over what just irritated me. I rationalize why what they said or did was wrong or insulting or hurtful. I victimize myself and then sometimes I cuddle up in all that victimization like it’s a nice cuddly blanket. If I’m really in a pit, I’ll even do what I can to bring others into my victimization blanket with me – I mean, come on, misery loves company right? Let’s all be poopy together!!
I am the reason for my poopy days, not my occupation.
The older I get (and yes…unfortunately, I am getting older) I try to avoid my poopy days. I am often reminded of my father’s words. “The world doesn’t revolve around you, Jaime!” And he is right. Things don’t always go my way…isn’t that life? Just because I want to complete my “to do” list, doesn’t mean I will get to. I can’t view other’s needs as always impeding my desires. When I was teaching school I had a poster of Chuck Swindoll’s quote “I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you…we are in charge of our attitudes.” I remind myself that some of the best people I know, people who have amazing attitudes about life, do so DESPITE their circumstances. I worked with one such person just last year. She was the art teacher at our school. She was and might still be one of the happiest people I know. She is a gifted teacher and artist. The kids loved her and she loved them. However, she battles with MS. Despite the toll that horrible disease would take on her, she always had a smile on her face and a zest for art and her students. I wish I could present to you the creations she inspired her students to make! They were amazing!! This woman could let her disease slow her down or give her excuses to be depressed or irritable. But I have yet to see her exhibit any such negativity. I know when I am feeling sorry for myself I am reminded of her and her AMAZING outlook on life. What a witness she is to others!
We live in a world that preaches “you deserve to be happy”….or “you need to do what makes you happy”. Honestly, I hate that. Don’t get me wrong, I like being happy…in fact, I quite love being happy! However, I would be lying to myself or my children if I taught these words to be true or even reasonable. I am a firm believer in the Bible and even Jesus Christ said, “In this world you will have trouble!” (John 16:33) I figure if God says there’s gonna be some trouble in life, then I might as well count on it and not lie to myself about expecting life to be happy all the time.
Which goes right back to where I started. I am responsible for my poopy days — not my business, not my hectic schedule, not others who might irritate me, not bad life circumstances – just plain old, every day me. My attitude is my choice.
What do you do when you’re having a poopy day?