Single Parent Faith

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Procrastination—The Precursor to Home Repair Emergencies

"I'm going to stop putting things off, starting tomorrow!" ~Sam Levenson.

Crescent Wrench

I keep procrastinating replacing the filter to my refrigerator’s ice maker. I have one of those old refrigerators where the filter is not conveniently located inside the refrigerator. Instead, you have to pull out the refrigerator and access it from behind. There’s a valve in the copper tubing so that you can close the water supply going into the filter before you try disconnecting the tubing from the filter. Otherwise, you have water spraying everywhere.

My valve is broken so I must go outside the house to shut off the water supply coming into the house. You do this by turning the main water shutoff valve’s knob (with a wrench or other tool) into the closed position. Basically turning it 90 degrees from its current open position.

A few weeks ago when I went to purchase a replacement filter, I could no longer find the filter similar to the one I have. We are seeing a lot more of this kind of situation known as Component Obsolescence.  

Obsolescence— the status given to a part when it is no longer available from its original manufacturer. 

When this happens, you wind up having to use a different part when it comes time to replace it, and often it doesn't have the same interfaces as the prior part. It's not always "plug and play,"  as simple as removing and replacing the part without making any alterations to your current hardware already in place. In my case, the filter I found had different fittings on its ends, which require the copper tubing be cut to remove its end fittings (no longer compatable with the new filter design). 
I was not so sure if it would be a quick alteration, and dreaded this becoming one of those projects that snowballs. So I decided to worry about it "later" and added it to my ever growing list of things I am behind on at home.  
There’s always something that gets in the way. Some reasons, other things I have to do, or prefer to do, and then I forget…
Monday morning I awoke to find a large pool of water on my kitchen floor. It looked like it was coming from the refrigerator so I pulled the refrigerator out to try to identify where the leak was specifically coming from. I imagined the worse case when I touched the wall behind the refrigerator and the sheet rock was soaked.
What if the line broke inside the wall? Oh my! To get a plumber out here on Labor day….and to do so fast enough that extensive damage doesn’t occur….
My mind started racing. And it was racing toward the cliff, as I entertained in my head all the terrible possibilities that could possibly be.
Meanwhile I ran around the house looking for the flashlight, my reading glasses, then waking up my daughter to ask for her help. All these things took time. Tick tock. I have to get to the root cause quickly, I thought, so that I can go outside to turn the valve off before further damage is done!  
Sleepy-eyed and not quite fully awake, I scanned the area behind the refrigerator. Just then I noticed a fine spray coming out of the tired and overworked ice filter. It had all it was going to take and decided (for me) when it was time to replace it. It wasn’t going to let me procrastinate any further.
Isn’t that the way life is? We can postpone the inevitable. But if we don’t take care of what we must in a proactive manner, we will certainly have to flounder with it one day. And that one day is not on our timetable, nor is it always at a convenient time. It doesn’t ask permission. It just pops in unannounced and unexpected.
The damage could have been so much worse. I am thankful that it was not.  I am thankful that I was not out of town when it decided to show me a life lesson.
Take care of the matters in your life that need your attention before they become life's emergencies. If you don’t deal with them on your schedule, they will force the moment of reckoning without consulting you.
Replacing the filter turned out to be a rather quick and painless installation process. It certainly was not as bad as previously dreaded. The act is swift, the dread leading up to it however, can last months. How does this make sense?
Are there areas in your life where you are procrastinating?
Ella Venezia
Copyright © 2012 Ella Venezia. All Rights Reserved.

Image sources: 1st and 3rd Google Images;  2nd per Ella Venezia.


  1. I'm a procrastinator, too, at times. I try to remind myself that some problems if fixed sooner save time in needing to fix other problems. Making a quick call now or cleaning up a mess while I'm in the room can be easier in the long run...after I finish...what was I doing? :-)

    1. Yes! You relate :) Michael. Thank you for sharing that you remind yourself that "problems if fixed sooner save time in needing to fix other problems." The old saying "nip it in the bud" comes to mind. :)


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