Mark Twain

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do ...
Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain

Monday, June 16, 2014

So it begins ... the carpet requiem

After almost 30 years we are finally replacing the carpeting in the main part of our townhouse.  The contract is signed and within the month, we will see this carpet ripped out and carried out the door.

Yes, this carpeting is 29 years old in July of this year.  It is the original carpeting that the builder put in and it was the best thing we chose when we selected options for our new town home those many years ago.

Many vendors who have passed down this hallway (carpet installers and professional carpet steam cleaners) have told us this is excellent carpeting ...  that you can't buy this quality carpet today no matter how expensive you go because carpet manufacturers don't want you to have carpet that lasts 30+ years!!  Planned obsolesces, they call it.

It is silly, but I get attached to "things" - things that have served me well and that I have owned and used for a long time.  And this stupid carpet is one of those "things."  I didn't shed any tears when we replaced the xyz things (refrigerator, stove, dishwasher, front door, glass door sliders, storm door, washer/dryer, water heater, roofing, deck, bathroom flooring, toilets, bathroom sinks, furniture ... it is an extensive list ), but for some crazy reason, pulling the carpet out makes me a little sad.

But everything wears out and this carpet is ready to go to "carpet heaven."  After all, it has been walked on, run on, spilled on, peed on, vomited on - you name it ... it has happened.  Even red wine.  It all came out - there is not one visable stain or wear path, but I can't get it really clean any more ... down below the rug surface into the pad where it really counts, and on humid days ... well, you get the idea.

The replacement?? ... No more rug for us.  Hard wood floors!  And it will be a dirty, noisy, intrusive  job for about 2 days.  Upstairs hall way, two and half flights of stairs and the first floor area - all hard wood.  No more hidden areas I can't clean.

And when they complete the flooring job, we are contracting to paint about 60% of the interior of the townhouse.  So the *#@%$ "fun" will just continue.  But it has been almost 20 years since we painted and that is also long over due too.  May as well get all the pain out of the way at one time!

I feel pressured to move forward with these jobs ... they are well passed due by many years and I now have this window of time without a mom-related emergency.  Really, for the last 7 or 8 years I stalled at doing anything ... couldn't handle "just one more thing, don't want to disturb mom, too tied up with her assisted living care, need to focus on nursing home transition, etc. etc. etc."

But now the environment of my house is causing me stress and it is a problem I can do something about.

All I need to do is write the check!

Oh, yes, the check!  There is another stressor!  These folks don't work for free.  But no matter.  It has to be done.

We are doing it this summer!

And I will be joyful at the end!  :-)

Tuesday, June 10, 2014


So here I am again, almost one month later.

Breaking a blog-silence.

After the recent "mom-illness-hospitalization-rehab-nursing home" episode, I have come to realize a few things about myself.

#1 - I don't know myself as well as I think I do. 

The rest of my story just falls like an avalanche out of #1!

I am not as resilient as I think I am or as I used to be.  Each set back in mom's situation is a set back for me personally and each of my set backs take longer to dig out of.  Sounds like a mom-related behavior!  Seniors taking care of seniors. Exhausting.

I still can "dive into" a mom-related crisis with the energy and the focus of someone half my age, but the personal price that is paid after the crisis gets longer and longer to recover from.  I can't seem to "dive out" with the same energy and focus and take back my own priorities without a long hard fight with myself.

Here I am 3 months later finally getting re-connected with my own needs ... but it seems like such an effort!

But I am trying ... really, really trying!  

Two weeks ago I prepared a blog post and pictures, but never posted it!  Does that still count?

I gained an all-time-high of body mass ... yes, too much weight!  I am back to watching my food intake and have thankfully settled back to my previous "all time high of body mass."  *sigh* Does that count?

I started walking and exercising but have missed the last week and a half.  Does the start of walking count?

I have started calling home improvement vendors to replace carpeting and flooring (long, long, dreadfully long overdue.)  But I dread the total upheaval that this kind of improvement will cause in my personal space.  No contracts signed yet, but will the effort of talking to someone about making improvements actually count?

I am knitting on a shawl for myself that I really don't care for - I bought the kits over 10 years ago.  Too bad I didn't make the shawl then when I loved the colors. No matter.  It came from deep stash and I thought I would come around when I got into it.  I didn't! I am almost finished so I can use it this fall in the house.  Certainly that finish object should count?

My other crafting lives are in another temporary limbo - that always seems to happen when I am in recovery.  Nothing there will count. (But ... I love walking into my yarn room and admiring my newly  assembled loom and stand with the newly started weaving project on it.  That counts for something.)

I returned to knitting group three weeks ago and enjoyed every moment, but felt like I was stealing time from other more worthy endeavors - like sitting on the couch and doing nothing!  Ok, now we all can agree that knitting group does count!!!

On the surface of my life everything looks under control.  But under the surface ... I am still struggling.  And I dread the thought that any gains I make will go up in smoke when mom takes her next downward step in living.

This "Recovery" stuff is hard hard work!