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My maiden name was Murphy….Part 1 of 2

Warning! this post is a little wordy and I apologize for that , but hang in there…there is a method to the madness. I know that I have alluded to Murphy’s Law in some of my former posts and the perspective that it has given us in our lives. I had planned on posting another write up on organization but I switched gears because I felt that now was a better time, since yesterday encapsulated the experience of Murphy’s Law, yet put life into perspective given what happened in parts of our country Monday with the devastating tornadoes.

We all are familiar with Murphy’s Law…whatever can go wrong will. It has a way of showing up in our life, so much so that our friends who know us well when they hear of the latest occurrence respond to the antics of the day by the phrase, “Of course it did!”  In the past it seems that Murphy’s Law rears it’s head whenever there is a crucial event, a special happening or something of the like. A special happening could be as simple as trying to get myself out of the house at the same time as my kids, dressed appropriately with matching shoes on! Remember, my maiden name is Murphy which makes this all make a little more sense…at least that is what I like to think. Some of my favorite (or least favorite) Murphy’s Law events include the following:

– One morning I had an important meeting and heading to school, my oldest son’s friend entered the house and asked, “Hello Mrs. Veno…where is your bathroom? I am not feeling well.” He then promptly throws up in the kitchen sink. After taking care of the boy, calling his mom who assures me it is just nerves (really?!?) and fielding shrieks from my younger kids who are not safely on their own school transportation stating, ” I am not coming into the kitchen to eat.”, I miss the meeting.

– A personal favorite was when my husband and I were going to Bermuda for a much needed 5 day trip with friends. After staying up all night to write the handbook of the Veno kids for the 6 person tag team who will take care of them while away, we get to the airport to be greeted at check in with, “Can I see your passports?” My husband and I look at each other asking at the same time, ” You brought the passports, right?” right…

– 5 years later the same husband (having survived many additional Murphy moments….) and I are going out of the country to Paris!  for the first time ever for our 20th Wedding Anniversary! This is big! It poured the day before but a beautiful Fall day dawns with gusty winds to dry the rains of the  previous day. My awesome husband books a limo to pick us up to go to the airport to kick off the trip. Yay! My in laws are here to hold down the fort and we are on schedule to meet friends at the airport who are also celebrating their 20th Wedding Anniversary. A beautiful white limo is waiting in our driveway. Our oldest son, (the one who’s friend christened my sink), rushes into the house yelling that a huge tree just fell across the driveway and almost hit him. Exxageration is his middle name, so we don’t think much of it while running outside. Sure enough, one of the oldest trees flanking the driveway has fallen all the way across it. (of course it did!) Father in law and husband get out the chainsaws and try to make it passable. No such luck. We live on a little farm and our driveway is about a half mile long. Kudos to the adventurous limo driver who states that he can try driving up through the fields and come out above where the tree has fallen. (Perhaps he saw my tears as I saw my flight leaving for Paris without me!) We pack inside, put all the weight in the back should we get stuck and vrmmmm! we are off! Have you ever seen a white limo that has turfed through rain drenched fields, wheels spinning for half a mile? We were quite a sight arriving in our “white” limo…getting more than one funny look from the crowd waiting in line as we raced up to the airport and unloaded in a split second dashing inside to make the flight! Need I say that we enjoyed the champagne on the way over? (of course we did!)

– Lastly, I want to talk about one of the Murphys Law moments that most affected my Life’s Patina Journey! Our oldest son Christopher has a heart of gold and wears it on his sleeve. He is passionate about what he believes in and what interests him and he has the energy level of our entire family of 7 in his one body. He eats, sleeps and breathes for outdoors and he is a born naturalist. He also has ADHD and significant learning differences. When he graduated from high school almost 2 years ago, it was a major accomplishment for him. He was not ready for college so we had found a Post Graduate program where he basically almost slept outdoors for a year and immersed himself into strengthening his executive functioning skills. It was a challenging program both mentally and physically but we knew it was what he needed. Being honest, it was what we all needed as well! Kids with ADHD are high maintenance and he is often more challenging than our other 4 kids combined. I was thinking to myself that yes! I would now have my nights free where as before I was the homework gestapo. Maybe now was a good time for me to jump into the business (Life’s Patina) that was a small idea that had been building in my mind for years! So, I took the plunge, formed the company, again YAY! and about the time we were signing the papers and getting all situated, our middle son, Shane, just 3 weeks shy of finishing up his freshman year started to have excessive sleep issues. (Now we all know how difficult it can be to wake up a sleeping teenager but this went above and beyond anything we had ever heard of. Some days took us a full hour to wake him up only to find him flat out on the floor five minutes after he finally awoke…sleeping again. To make a long story short, he was diagnosed with an obscure syndrome called POTs (Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia). (of course he did!) It is basically a shut down of your autonomic nervous system, everything that your body does on its own that you rarely think of: heart rate, blood pressure, digestion, body temp, fluid retention etc. I will not bore you with the scientific slant on this whole thing but it caused him to not be able to go to school the year that Christopher was leaving for his Post Grad program. One son leaves who needs all of my attention and another one takes his place. (of course he did!) As mom’s, all of our children need our attention…some a little more than others.

My point in telling you all of this is that there are always Murphy’s Law situations that crop up in all of our lives. In our life, they cause us to think on our toes and to be flexible. Things are not set in stone…we all have our plans, our dreams, our aspirations. Sometimes we are thrown a curve ball, some are ones that we can still manage to hit and others are ones that will make us swing like crazy. It is how we respond to them that counts. They will all make us stronger…to handle the next one that comes along. We look at them as events that make our lives interesting , some are humorous (tree incident falling across the driveway), some are much more serious (Shane’s illness) but they are all events that can easily put things into perspective.

So where am I going with all this – THANKS for indulging me….Life’s Patina is something that so inspires me to make it through these Murphy’s Law events which have contributed so much to my personal Patina (and my gray hair!). It is something that I enjoy, embrace and gives me joy, just as my family does but in a totally different way…BUT…Murphy’s Law is alive and well in my life….let me just briefly describe my Monday. It was a rough weekend (stomach flu & Constitution Center with the Boy Scouts for 7 hours – a toss up for which was more pleasant!) but I woke up full of hope and optimism that I would conquer the world this week!!  All of the kids made their proper buses and cars to school!  The day was looking good!!  I was breathing a sigh of relief and relishing in the quiet moments that surrounded me after the rush of the morning until….  good ole Mr. Murphy showed up (no, not my dad).  That Murphy’s Law thing and here’s how it went instead…

You will have to tune in tomorrow to see how Murphy came into play on the day’s events!

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