Forgive me because this isn't going to be a typical post filled with fun stories or cute pictures of my kids. No, today I am feeling a good mix of sadness, disappointment, disrespect, and fury. This issue has been brewing for three years, and despite our best efforts, we're dealing with the same problem still today.
Every year as summer draws near, I begin to get excited for sunshine, time at the park, swimming at the pool, and extra time with friends and family. Then, very quickly, I remember that it is also firework season. Yes, I use the word season because three years ago, our neighbors began setting off fireworks during the weeks preceding Independence Day, on the actual holiday, and then again after the holiday has ended. Mind you, we live in a residential community not in the middle of farm land with lots of acreage.
The first year, Noah was an infant, and for anyone who is a parent, you can understand the fury you feel when your baby is finally fast asleep only to be woken up crying by fireworks. Oh and by fireworks I don't mean the ones that make a little noise or even the ones that just crack in the sky when you shoot them off. I'm talking about the ones that make a HUGE LOUD BOOM launching off the ground and then sound like a freaking bomb went off over your house. I'm talking about the ones that make my whole body jump when they launch into the air and then just completely infuriate me when they explode.
Of course I'm worried about one hitting my house and setting it on fire. I fear that one will hit Noah's bedroom and explode. I know the chance is probably not huge, but the fear is there. However, what really hurts the most is how scared Noah gets when they explode over his room. He and Liam were both crying last night, and I was furious! I'm not sure there is anything else in the world that can hurt/upset parents like someone else hurting their kids.
You're probably wondering if we've ever approached our neighbors, and the answer is yes. The first time was three years ago after they had been going off all night and were still going off at 1:30 a.m. Yet another firework woke me up, and I couldn't take it anymore. I walked down and asked them to please stop, and they did. Each summer since, we have talked to them about how it wakes up Noah, but it continues to be a problem. Now this summer, Ryan has tried to talk with them, and even Noah has told them how it hurts his ears and scares him. Can you imagine a 3 year old telling you that what you're doing scares him and still doing it anyway? I can't. Each time we talk to them, they are very nice, apologize, and stop. However, for whatever reason, they continue to set off bombs over our house. This year on Independence Day, we were expecting the mother load. And you know what? That would have been at least understandable. I can handle one day of fireworks where my kid has to be up late because he can't sleep and is scared. It would suck, but at least it would be one day. I can plan ahead for that and have a movie ready or something. BUT - when it's weeks before the holiday and still after the 4th, it has gone too far. It's inconsiderate and hurtful. They're scaring my EIGHT WEEK old baby and my THREE year old son. My kids are crying, and I am furious!
I have never felt so disrespected in my adult life. I don't think anyone has slapped me in the face like this in years. If someone told me that something I did was hurting them and heaven forbid, hurting their kids, I can't imagine doing it anyway without caring. The real kicker is that we are friends with these people. Ryan has taken the guy to a Colt's game, and I get along well with his wife. They have great kids...sweet kids. It would make more sense if we didn't get along. I'm left feeling confused, sad, and really angry.
I'm praying for the opportunity to talk with them and let them know how hurt I am and how disrespected I feel. My window to have that conversation is very small until tomorrow night. My friend, Sara, and her nearly 2 year old son are visiting overnight. If they set them off tonight, I can't imagine how angry I'm going to be. Pray for my kids that they get to sleep tonight without being scared and woken up, and pray that when the opportunity presents itself that I can share how I feel without losing my temper. I just want to say, "I hope it was worth it...every year making my kid(s) cry and waking them up. I hope fireworks are worth infuriating your neighbors. I hope the bright colors and huge BOOMS make giving up a good relationship with friends worth it." To me, nothing would be worth it.