It was a beautiful July day and all 7 of us were home. The weather was amazing; not hot, but beautiful! All the windows were open and everyone was busy doing different things. Everyone was occupied and everyone was getting along. My husband was out washing the car. One of the girls was upstairs hanging out, 2 others were watching a movie in the basement and the other two were playing a rousing game of Xbox Connex soccer. I was working on the computer, enjoying the breeze through the open window, listening to my kids playfully trash talk in their virtual soccer game, and feeling thankful for the moment. A short time later, the car was washed, the virtual soccer match was finished, and most everyone had congregated in the family room. A great, peaceful day! The doorbell rang and our daughter went to answer it, at our urging…….She comes sprinting back to the family room. “Mom! The police are at the door!!” I immediately went to the front door, trying to hold back the alarm growing in my chest (even as I struggled to think of why they might be there). I see two officers, one at the door, another hanging back in the yard (petting our Golden Retriever). “Hi, can I help you?”, I ask. First the officer looks over my shoulder and asks “Is she ok?”. (Unbeknownst to me, when my daughter went to answer the door, she had just glanced and saw the police officers and didn’t answer the door, but instead ran back to get me — raising their alarm at her abrupt departure.) “She is fine — we just taught her not to answer the door if it is someone she doesn’t know — and she didn’t know you, so she came to get me.” The officer responded with understanding then went on to say, “We received a domestic disturbance complaint, in regards to this house, saying they heard yelling. Is everything ok?” “Yes, we do have 5 kids and they are all home right now”, I responded and laughed. I paused in complete confusion — trying desperately to figure out what could have prompted the complaint — no one had even been arguing or upset at anyone else (and yes that does happen and yes yelling does happen sometimes, but not that time 🙂 My mind raced through the activities of my family during the past hour. Clarity came, when I recalled the virtual soccer game. I realized that to the unknowing passerby (and we live on a busy corner across from a park) the trash talking and cries of “Stop kicking me!” “You can’t do that!” “You hit me!” “Get out of my way!” “No!”; floating through the open windows, could sound very alarming. I explained to the officer that two of our kids were playing an Xbox connex, virtual soccer game and were very competitive, and that was probably what was heard. My husband agreed, saying he could hear it as he washed the car and it was loud. I went on to say, we have 4 teen age daughters, and a preteen son, and our house isn’t quiet by nature. At this the officers laughed and showed real signs of understanding and even sympathy. One even said, “Does school need to start Ma’am?” “Some days yes sir!” 🙂 I responded honestly. The officers, kindly explained that they have to check out each complaint. They commented on how cute our dog was, and went on their way. I was left confused, embarrassed and wary; wondering who had complained, what people thought, and how our family really sounds to those on the outside. Here it was a beautiful day, and one on which all the kids were actually getting along, and look what happened. (I could only imagine what would happen on the days when they aren’t getting along, and are really fighting) Shaking I went to call a good friend and tell her what happened. I poured out my story and my desperation and embarrassment ……..and she burst out laughing. “That’s funny! she said. “No it’s not, it’s embarrassing!, I cried! “No, that’s really, really funny! she insisted, as she laughed. “Think about it…….they were playing a ‘virtual’ game……no one did anything wrong……….the police came in response to virtual contact ……. that’s funny!. “It’s embarrassing!” I said. She softened and expressed her sympathy and understanding, and then said again……”That’s really funny!!” I sighed and laughed…..really laughed. …………It was pretty funny! Later in the day, semi-recovered from the earlier situation, my son had a friend over and I hear them running around and yelling, “Don’t Shoot!” “Ahhh you got me!” “Not my head!” I quickly realized they were having a dart gun fight. Battling the embarrassment and alarm at what people might be hearing and might think, I just laughed. What is a Mom to do! It really was funny, embarrassing, funny, real life, funny; and par for the course for our crazy family, living our crazy life!! So, as I have said before if you are every feeling embarrassed, frustrated, or alone in your parenting or life in general, let me know……..I am sure I have a story that will make you feel better!