Monday, July 28, 2008

Home is where you hang your hate.

It's my fault I hate my current house.  A long time ago I had a house in South Provo.  Aidan's Dad and I bought it from a couple that had really done a neat job fixing it up.  We did some tweaking, too.  All of my extra time was pretty much spent thrift shopping for decor seeing as how I was mostly a stay at home mom back then.  We painted and landscaped.  It turned out so well I over did the self congratulation. When it came time to sell it, I cried for days like it was the end of the world.  I cried more over that house than I did my Ex.  But then again, the house never cheated on me and called me bad names behind my back.  We sold it for 15,000 more than we paid which was really pretty good at the time and for the BYU area. 

Cut to: Years later, I listen as I hear myself saying to my husband and the Realtor that I can fix up this house.  I did not take into account the following...

1.  I have quit drinking coffee.  I used to have half a pot at breakfast, a latte or an espresso in the afternoon and at least one more cup around four or five.  I could have cut the lawn with fingernail clippers I was so high.

2.  I had one child.  And he liked to play quietly, by himself, for hours.

3.  Ty really did a majority of the work.

4.  Ty had a Dad that told us how to do a majority of the work.

5.  Most of the hard stuff was done before we got there.

6.  The disastrous, slap-dash construction of this house VS the old solid one.

7.  I am kinda old.

8.  I have an actual career now that takes actual effort.

9.  We do not have credit cards with tens of thousands of dollars available to us.  (Thankfully, really.)

10.  I am a raving lunatic.  And I don't know what the hell I am talking about.  I mean this kind of thing needs to go to people that really know what they are doing not someone who can paint some tile and lay some flooring.  And Brett didn't know the total depths of my insanity since we had only been married a year.  After seeing how hard it is for my neighbor who is a professional, I am stymied I ever thought I could do it on my own.

So in buying this house my mouth wrote a check that my Butt can't cash.  In the meantime...  

1.  We have one bathroom.  And it doesn't really work.  We are all showering in a 3X3 ft shower with broken tiles and twenty year old non-skid flower decals that make me wonder how many Y students have peed on them.  

2.  About seven hundred square feet of our downstairs is infected with mold.  One day I lost my mind and I just pulled off the faux wood paneling for no reason.  Now if I had not done this the mold would not have been an issue.  It would have been sealed up in there and stayed in it's little happy place and since it's not the toxic kind and we are not allergic we'd have been fine.  We could have painted and laid carpet and let it go like that forever.  I unleashed it.  And now it's angry and blames me for all of it's problems.  

3.  The stairs to the deck are a rotting wooden death-trap.  One is even missing.  Not only have the kids tripped over it countless times but the dog actually fell through to the concrete down below.  Which is a good ten foot drop.  He is OK.  Just stupid and that's unrelated.

4.  The dishwasher falls out of the wall.  And the dish rack comes rolling out onto the floor, or my foot, or the dog.  And the dishes all fall out and break or spill out everywhere and need to be re-washed and scraped of pug hair.

5.  The downstairs has asbestos ceilings and asbestos tiles and asbestos tar adhesive holding down the asbestos tiles.  No plumber or construction worker or person of intelligence will come down and work on our house for even just one day, even one hour, because exposure might make them die a horrible death many years from now.  So we have that to look forward to.

Living here reminds me every day of my life that I am full of myself and I'm an idiot and I am living in a place that I said I could fix, but instead endangers my family and neighbors and dog and thus makes me want to cry every minute I'm in it.  

Brett and I share an odd factoid.  We have both moved over 30 times.  Our families broke and set and re-broke repeatedly like bones that didn't knit right.  Brett moved almost 20 times before he was 21.  NOT counting his mission.  I moved, I think, 27 times total.  My son has moved six times in his short 8 years.  We all are tired.  We are all disappointed.  We all want our lives to just...start.  To just have friends and family come for dinner, to have neighborhood kids stay over night, to use a working bathtub.  If Brett had lost a limb in the military or one of my kids had been diagnosed terminal we might qualify for an Extreme Home Make-over.  But we are not messed up enough as to receive television charity and not pulled together enough to qualify to be what we have always wanted to be.  Just a normal family.

8 comments:

BrettM said...

I wish you wouldn't be so hard on yourself. The exterior of the house (which you did all by yourself) looks better than any other house on the street. (No offense, other houses.) And the parts upstairs that we can live in look great. And have you seen the bathroom floor you did? Amarvelazing.

I wish I was a better man. The kind of guy that could step in and take over and fix everything. Sorry you married an actor/writer. Hey, I do good with scripts. Tell me my "part" is that of a remodel-er and then give me a list of things you need done. I may do it wrong but I'll know my motivation.

Lisa said...

Was that second paragraph in Brett's comment really written by Topher. . .because it sounds so, so familiar!

I love your house, and I"m not just saying that. You have such fabulous style and it looks amazing. And you CAN'T BEAT the location! We have a pulled up floor and exposed dry wall in our bathroom. . .it's chaming, right? Charming!

Your bathroom floor is AWESOME! Don't be so hard on yourself. I can't do any of that stuff.

Shawn said...

Look on the bright side...you're not me----I am old and still renting! :)

I have moved about 35 times and at least 8 times in the last 11 years. So, feel good that you have a house and I'm sure that it will get better!

Josh said...

We love you.

Hailey said...

I wish I could help, but I have ZERO experience at house fixing. My advice is to get the one that's already fixed that you love (sorry, Brett!) That's what I would do--get the h out...

Jewels said...

Since we have not had our sewing/singing party yet, I have haven't seen your house. But I don't doubt that it's a marvel. We are usually so much harder on ourselves about our dwellings than we need to be. We live in it, so we notice every little thing and dream of how great it could be...if only we had endless funds and time to do it in. Not to mention the know-how. I can sympathize because I too deal with these same, helpless thoughts that make me feel so behind - like I will never have that house where I can just come home, drop my keys and start cooking a pot roast in my perfectly clean, decorated house ("...somewhere that's green..." Little Shop of Horrors? Anyone?).

Anyway, I know where you're coming from. But honestly - just having someone like you in that house makes in a home.

The Bakers said...

Aww Jewels...that was tender.
I was going to sympathize with the moving then and then go on to say that it's been really hard to be in one house that I mostly do not like for two years, though it is free of mold and there are two bathrooms...one that I hate. And that I don't have a closet because my husband keeps his clothes in our room's hole in the wall and I keep mine in the baby's room's hole in the wall. However, it is true that a home is what you make of it, and it is hard to want to just be normal and settled.
One final note...my husband is muy handy. Maybe we should have a Saturday sewing/singing party whilst my husband and your husband rip and lay tile?!

theJorgies said...

look at you with your shnazzy blog background doing it's thang ... muy impressivo. and judging by your blog decor taste, i'm sure the house is a close second, maybe third, but likely second.

home ownership ... oh how i covet thee.