Pinch, pinch, pull.
If my daughter’s preschool teacher can inspire twenty-five four year-olds to use this technique to open their pint-size pouches of fruit snacks, you’d think I’d be able to employ it to open a bag of pasta.
Employing said technique, I managed to send dozens of uncooked Ditali skittering across the counter. Surprisingly enough I caught myself before a torrent of curses loosed from my mouth, which is usually what would happen. I pressed my body up against the impending avalanche and managed to keep all but a few Ditali from dropping. I gathered the rest up by the fistful, after seeking out a few strays, and threw them into the boiling pot, shepherding the lost sheep to lead them to the slaughter. And the overused idiom came to mind.
There really is no use crying over spilt whatever.
If I had flipped out (as I said I’m wont to do), what purpose would it have served? I’d give my two year-old a few more choice words to add to her repertoire of words bound to be repeated when least desired? I’d pump my blood pressure up a few points? I’d push even more pasta over the precipice with my spastic gesticulations? Really, there’s nothing positive that ‘crying’ would have added to the situation. I’d still be a few Ditali short of a pound.
Not unlike the time I decided to bake Christmas cookies with all three kids. Though the ‘baby’ was fifteen months old and I should’ve been ‘recovered’ from postpartum depression, I still got stressed very easily, had very little patience, and hated anything that made my job harder. In this case: candy sprinkles. Each time a candy-coated ball hit the floor, my rip-shit meter went up another notch. Then Bella picked up the bottle, gave it a good shake, and the whole flippin’ lid flew off, blanketing the floor in a layer of rainbow-hued ball bearings. I felt the wave of anger swell up inside me, but like some out-of-body experience, I stopped it before it crested. Somehow, it occurred to me that it didn’t matter. Let them throw candy around like confetti, for goodness sake – couldn’t get any worse now, could it?
This is not to say I’m happy when things like this happen. Very often, you will find me cursing when I find myself under the dining room table on my hands and knees in the middle of dinner mopping up spilt milk. And stuff like this is just one more thing threatening to push me over the edge in my already heightened state of stress.
I try to be Zen. I try to employ my relaxation response. I apologize to Jesus for taking His name in vain – again (something I never did until I had the third kid, by the way). But like there’ll always be stressors, I’ll always be striving to keep it on the down low. Just like I’ll be finding those flippin’ candy sprinkles under the stove each time I pull it out for the rest of my life.