Wake Up Call
“Phil! Something’s Burning!” It was about 5:30 am and I went from half asleep to up and out in the kitchen in about a 1/2 second. Those that played softball with me back in the day probably aren’t shocked by the speed, but there isn’t much that wakes you up like smoke in your house.
My wife, Heather, determined there was something wrong with the refrigerator. She “heard a noise and then saw smoke.” Yep, definitely something wrong there.
I pulled the refrigerator out from the cabinets away from the wall. The smell was not pleasant. The smoke was also not constant. Heather was ready with the fire extinguisher but fortunately we did not need it. Every so often, may be 10-15 minutes, we’d hear a whirring sound an then a puff of smoke released from the bottom of the back of the unit.
Monitoring the Situation
I took a shower and got ready for work while Heather monitored the situation. Then she got ready for her Bible Study and I emailed that I would be late into work.
The whirring and smoke thing happened a couple more times and you’d think that we’d just unplug it but it was still keeping our food cold. I did empty the freezer and was able to store it all in our deep freeze that we have in the garage. Then it hit me that this was possibly caused by the ice-maker. Our ice machine had been on the fritz for several months. It occurred to me to turn the machine off so it wouldn’t try to make ice. I think that did it but the damage was done to the refrigerator.
Unexpected Shopping Trip
First thing we did at 9:00 am was go shopping for a new refrigerator. We found a Maytag model that we liked and were able to get it installed later that afternoon.
Heather found that when she went to pull the food out of the old refrigerator, there was condensation and it had stopped working. We still hadn’t unplugged it because it was keeping the food cold still. Or at least it was for a while. We’re not certain at what point it stopped working.
We were thankful this happened when we were home. We had been gone the entire previous day. We were also thankful to get a new refrigerator replaced the same day.
When a crisis comes up, it seems like you automatically switch into survival mode. You get the mindset of “what do I need to do right now to work toward a resolution to this issue.”
Things come up in life and sometimes we need to drop everything else for that which needs our attention and deserves to be top priority.
Cody Collier talked about this in episode 031 of the podcast. When his wife was put on bed rest in the hospital due to complications with her pregnancy, he said, “you go into survival mode to do what you need to do to take care of your family.”
A smoking refrigerator is obviously not as serious as complications with a pregnancy but it illustrates the point. You can’t ignore matters that are urgent. Heather did not want to deal with that by herself. I didn’t want her to have to deal with it by herself either.
For the benefit of your marriage and your family, do what you need to do to take care of them. They are your highest priority. Be alert enough to recognize when something is burning that needs your attention. Maybe it’s a relationship with your daughter that is not good. Maybe your son is going down a path that will hurt him. Step up and get the fire extinguisher out to correct what is wrong so it doesn’t turn into a major disaster.