I have become a regular Mr.Fix-it. My kids always tell me I can fix anything. I must admit, I have gotten better at repairing things. Sometimes I even surprise myself. Some of that may just be having 3 kids to clean up after. But I think it is more than that. It's not just repairs anymore, but projects as a whole. Did this ability come from God? Is it an experience thing? Maybe I have more patience the older I get. I am not sure, but I think it's a combination of all of them. Currently, I am in the middle of refinishing our family's little red wagon. You know the kind.....says "Radio Flyer" on the side. It started out as a present from my wife's grandparents for our oldest, who is now 10. After years of use, and being stored occasionally outside, it had become quite rusted. Now, the baby has taking a liking to the wagon. The problem occurs when she climbs into the rusted wagon and magically transforms into a giant Cheetos. The rusty dust colors her orange from head to toe. Per my wife's request, refinishing it has become my new project.
I still remember when I couldn't even fix a sandwich, let alone a broken child's toy. Now, they line up at the Toy Hospital (by the Microwave) waiting to see the Fixer. I have turned into the old man from Toy Story who sows Woody's arm back on. Yep, I have come a long way from the kid who used to constantly take thing apart only to realize there was no way of ever putting them back together. I broke more things than I'll ever probably fix. But, at least I am at the fixing stage of my life now that my stuff is more expensive.
I remember my dad always fixing stuff, usually stuff I had broken. Mainly, he fixed cars though. He could do anything. Now, he pays to have stuff done for him. I wonder if I'll get to that stage next. I remember when he was fixing stuff, my job was to hand him tools. That's all I was trusted to do, and the only time I was allowed to touch "the tools". After my wife suggested that the boys help me refinish the wagon, I suddenly realized why Dad made me the tool-hander-only guy. The thought of working with the boys on this almost drove me insane. I could just see it........The rust wouldn't get sanded off completely......Paint would be on everything BUT the wagon, including themselves......and they would have each lost and destroyed something in the process. Part of me wanted to have them help, cause I know that's the only way they'll ever learn, but the SMARTER part of me wanted to get the job done RIGHT.
Case in point.....the wife had left last night to attend a PTO meeting. Immediately after dinner, as I was cleaning up the baby........who was wearing more than she was eating, the boys decided to start fighting. I warned them repeatedly to calm down, but they kept at it, albeit quietly for a brief second. I see the older one run bye, then I hear a loud, "CRACK!" Then another, "Crack!" It begins to register in my brain that something is amiss. Then I hear another louder, "Crack!". I turn around to see the 5 yr old using the baby gate, which had fallen on the floor, as a trampoline. This is our only baby gate. It's the one we use to keep our busy little curly top out of the kitchen. It keeps her from playing in the stove, the chemicals under the sink, eating the dog's food, or choking on refrigerator magnets. I begin freaking out. "Sammy! What are you doing?! You just broke that gate! What were you thinking?!" He said, "I didn't know that would happen". I said, "What did you think was gonna happen if you repeatedly jumped up and down on it?" Then I said, "Gee, I wonder what will happen if I go into your room and start bashing your toys with my hammer! You think they'll break?!" I wasn't about to do this though, cause I knew who would be fixing them. I said, "You think I'm mad? You wait till you're mom gets home and you tell her what you did. She counts on that gate when she's here all day with your sister and trying to get stuff done."
Then, almost in unison, both boys said, "You can just fix it, can't you?!" That's when I uttered the title of this blog. It sounds cruel, but it's honest. I could never fix my own.