Archive for June, 2009

Life lessons learned while playing Mario Kart at 2 am

June 2, 2009

The title of this post pretty much sums it all up right now. We’ve been putting off assembling Josiah’s new toddler bed because it just seemed like a lot of work. A lot of work to put it together (the box said ‘easy assembly’ but it’s never easy when I’m involved), a lot of work to disassemble the old crib, and a lot of work to see if Josiah will actually sleep in the new bed.

Well, thanks to some help from my Dad, we got the bed assembled yesterday and decided tonight was the night to try it out.

Since I’m writing this post at almost 2:30 in the morning, you can guess how well it’s going! Josiah got really mad tonight when he saw the bed in his room. He eventually fell asleep on my wife’s lap and we put him in the bed. He slept for a good 2 and a half hours and then woke up in a really foul mood around 10:30 pm. He’s been up ever since.  Why we didn’t debut the new bed on a Friday when we wouldn’t have to work for a few days and could afford to lose some sleep is beyond me now. Guess we should have thought of that.

So after tossing & turning a bit, listening to some podcasts, and contemplating how my life has reached the zany state it’s at now, I decided to head downstairs with a book, my iPod, and my Mario Kart wheel. I still haven’t touched the book or iPod since I’ve been in the basement, but it seemed like as good a time as any to take the old Mario Kart for a spin again.

As I sped & crashed around the turns, it dawned on me how much this addictive little game is mirroring my life lately. You see, when I play Mario Kart, I rarely feel like a winner. Sure, sometimes I’m in first place at various points, but inevitably something comes along to trip me up and I find myself in last place trying desperately to catch up.

I might be leading the pack and suddenly a turtle shell is thrown at me, knocking me off course. Kind of like how one minute I’m excited thinking Josiah is making great progress with a certain area, and then the shell comes in the form of him being up all night.

Sometimes while driving, you have an octopus splatter ink all over the screen while you’re driving so you can’t see anything. That’s how I feel when I can’t see if what we’re doing are the right things. Are we utilizing all the services we should be?


Or I’m driving my Kart when a cloud and lightning bolt hit me, sending my Kart twirling to the back of the pack where I suddenly am struggling again. That’s how I felt last week when during a pretty good day at work, I found out my insurance is going to be a different carrier come July 1st and I now have to struggle with the state & the insurance companies to make sure my little son can get the help he so desperately needs. If I can’t get this all figured out, I honestly don’t know what we’ll do. I feel like I’ve just driven my Kart into the hot lava of the Grumble Volcano and I’m just waiting around for an angel to lift me back into the race.

And there are those times when I’m feeling confident, tall, and driving with purpose. Suddenly the big ‘boom’ box shows up on the screen and reduces my driver to just a little miniature version of himself. That’s how I feel every time I think we have something figured out with Josiah’s eating or overall health and then without any warning, we find ourselves feeling shrunken.

I often feel like the other drivers on the track are the other parents of ‘typical’ children we know. They seem to be able to drive around without anything bad happening to them while I’m constantly in peril. I know that I can’t see everything and they are likely getting hit with turtle shells when I’m somewhere else, but man it really feels lately like no matter how hard I try, I’m always crossing the finish line last. How I’d love to just get that first place trophy. I’d prefer it in real life, but honestly at this point I’d consider it a major victory if I could just win at Mario Kart again.

Hopefully these analogies are making some sort of sense. It is almost 2:40 now after all so I might be a little loopy. But it does sound like Josiah may finally be asleep, so perhaps I have a chance tonight in this race after all. At least until someone tries to run me over again!