Broken Window


Well, this makes 8 posts in 8 days…

This week we had a broken window repaired and it reminded me of one of my first blog posts ever, back on my old blog when I had time to write long posts.  I am going to repost it here tonight.  This was five years ago, when my children were 5 years old (W), 2 1/2 years (L), and 9 mos old (M & B).

Broken Window

originally published on To Mark Time on July 21, 2008

Today we had four windows replaced in our house. Over the past year W has sent several balls and rocks through various windows and we’ve just been taping them up, until now we have enough of a job to make it worth a repairman’s while. However, the fourth broken window, the one that prompted the call to the glass company, I broke. On a hectic morning of restless boys and cranky babies, I sent W and L outside to play so I could calm the babies down for a nap. While changing diapers and wrapping blankets, I looked out the window and saw W spraying a jet of water from the hose directly at our next-door neighbor’s house. I rapped on the window and called for him to stop. (For some inscrutable reason, previous owners of our home installed solid panes of glass instead of open-able windows in the two rooms of our house without central air-conditioning.) My calling out didn’t register with W. The babies were both crying by then, and I didn’t want to run out to the yard to talk to him. Frustrated, I pounded harder on the window, yelling “Turn off the hose!” and thinking ‘I hope this doesn’t break,’ just as, of course, my fist shattered the glass.

Well, that did stop W from spraying the neighbor’s house! But I’m embarrassed to say that my first thought was actually, “God! How could you let this happen right now? I’m already so stressed out!!” Eventually, I got everyone settled in bed for rest and started cleaning up the mess—sweeping and wiping up the floor inside, picking through the grass outside for shards of glass, grumbling all the while that my plans for accomplishing a long to-do list during nap time had shattered along with the window.

Then I stopped, took a deep breath, and prayed, a bit more humbly, “I’m sorry I was so impatient. I really need your help today.” And I sat down on the grass for a few minutes and was quiet.

A window repairman came the next day and told me the window was small enough that installing a new window would not cost much more than replacing the solid glass. Later my mother-in-law said to me, “You’ve been wanting a window that opens. Maybe the broken window is God’s gift to you.” She was right.