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You Fixed Me By Helping Me Learn to Fix Things

·474 words·3 mins

The Keurig machine we got at a yard sale in Maine finally gave up the ghost. We paid $5 for it. Had it 2 years. When this happened, out came our traditional coffeemaker. Of course I’m no longer in the habit of making pots of coffee. I make too much or too little. It sits, gets cold. I’m learning to live without the convenience. Nuking coffee in the microwave, I noticed the time was wrong on the display. And I fixed it.

As I did, it occurred to me that there was a time in the past that I would have just let the wrong display time sit there indefinitely. Not sure how to change it. Not wanting to screw anything up.

This time, I plunged in and figured it out. No sweat. Barely worth commenting on. But it’s such a huge change in me.

It’s such a small thing, but you’ve had this effect on me. You fix little things when you see them. And you walk me through what you’re doing, when I ask. Simply shadowing you while you DIY, I’ve picked up so much mechanical knowledge. Not just the workings of any given household gadget — but how troubleshooting even works. How to analyze the problem space and really look at the parts and figure out what they’re doing.

This is second nature to you — and to a lot of other people. But in the house I grew up in, I wasn’t allowed to explore or touch anything. My father took my brother off to do “guy stuff” together (repairs were in that category). When I tried to tag along, I was chased off, shouted away. This was for the males in the family, didn’t I know?

I hated that feeling. I suppose it didn’t help that my mother wasn’t exactly keen to do “girl stuff” with me either. Cooking, crafting, sewing, etc. I was the third daughter in my family, and by the time I came into the world, she was burned out on it.

I spent most of my childhood reading books quietly. Or watching tacky game shows. I loved game shows.

It wasn’t until my 30s, until I met you, that I learned I was capable of doing all those things I was shouted away from. You took me and guided me. Let me ask questions. We did things together.

And then when we sold our house to relocate somewhere else, I did most of the DIY myself. Trained at the YouTube school of Home Remodeling (since you were on the other side of the country getting our new home ready and settling into your new job).

Anyway, it blows me away sometimes — how much you fixed me by helping me learn to fix things myself. By teaching me I’m much more capable than I thought.


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