Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Calm amid the chaos

Jack Bauer came home yesterday with news I didn't want to hear. After learning the hard way that the single, nonstandard, bright white drawer front isn't going to be a simple thing to replace, after much cursing of the incompetence of the folks at Lowe's who couldn't tell us that in the first place, after swearing to hunt down the families of these idiots and hanging them from their toe nails, and after listening to Jack Bauer agree completely, I started laughing. And I came up with an alternative solution. It is after all a single drawer front in a simple but bright kitchen that could stand a well-financed remodel (I think it dreams of looking like this picture, or is that my dream?) in a 75+-year-old house. The right paint will have to suffice as a covering.

Jack is leaving here in a few days. Then I'll be on my own for a week before my mother comes to help me finish up and drive to C-ville with me and the dogs. Yep, that's where we are going first, C-ville. Before Jack drives off, I want to have as much of the heavy lifting, power tools-required jobs done, making it so the calls to the handy man and/or other hired people are as few as possible. Thus, the tasks of getting things like drawer fronts replaced has fallen to him. (Power tools could have been involved.)

But his impending departure has got me thinking. It has been 90% business around here with getting the house ready to sell. We've had some fun along the way -- vacation, movies, fancy dinners out -- but for the most part it is focus time on the task of putting on a fresh face to this old bungalow. Business and stressful business at that. And that is just one thing we've got going on.

I scanned the Internet for the most stressful life events. Sure enough, according to this one publication, of the top 50 stressful life events we are experiencing #12 reconciliation with spouse, #13 being unemployed (me), #14 experiencing financial difficulties (how could I deal with #13 and #40 and NOT have be going through #14 as well?), #33 changing careers (Jack), #38 spouse (me) ceases work outside the home, and #40 change in residence. Just 6. Granted no one is ill and no one has died, we are happily living together and excited about our future. But stressful times around here nonetheless.

And while life is stressful and battle-weary tempers can flare with silly frustrations (that would be me, not Jack), we can still see that no one is ill, no one has died. It is still just a simple drawer front. And we can laugh about it even if it doesn't match the rest of the kitchen.

Come to think of it, maybe we should paint it bright red.