Two weeks ago my life could be summed up like this:
- I had people from Florida coming to look at my house in 3 weeks and needed to move all of my junk out of the house and finish up all miscellaneous projects.
- I had a week of classes to attend until 10 PM each night
And let me tell you, I was pretty busy, but I figured I’ve done plenty worse, so I could handle it. You know what having a thought like that is called? Tempting fate.
What happened next was I received an email from the lovely couple from florida saying they had moved their travel up and would now be here in two weeks, essentially cutting the number of weekends I could devote to working on the house in half.
And I thought, things are going to get a little busier, but I can handle it.
Then I was contacted by ehow.com about fact-checking 500 of their home improvement articles in the next two weeks. And when you’re building a house on limited funds that needs to have a roof and walls before winter, you will take any job that comes your way…
So now I had:
- People from Florida coming to look at my house in 2 weeks and needed to move all of my junk out of the house and finish up all miscellaneous projects
- A week of classes to attend until 10 PM each night
- 500 how-to articles to fact check
And I thought, okay, I’m not going to get very much sleep, but I can handle it.
Then, MysteryMan had an opportunity to spend a long weekend in Florida with a cousin that he doesn’t see very often and won’t have a chance to visit for the next year once we start the house. And the stress of being locked in the dungeon with the house plans was taking a toll on him. I love the guy so how could I do anything but encourage him to spend the weekend relaxing*?
And I thought, I’ve just sent my backup crew to the other end of the country, but my URL says “DIYdiva” so I must be able to handle it.
As I’m in the midst of proving that to myself– painting the bathroom, making curtains for under the basement stairs, packing up clothes, cleaning the baseboards, and any number of other things between the hours of 6PM and 3AM– one of the accounts I manage for my Actual Real Job explodes. Not literally, but with enough emotional force to necessitate a trip to Rhode Island in the 5 days I have left to accomplish an ever increasing list of tasks.
Now I had:
- People from Florida coming to look at my house in 7 days and needed to move all of my junk out of the house and finish up all miscellaneous projects
- 500 how-to articles to fact check
- Builders classes to attend until 10 PM
- A trip to Rhode Island to coordinate the day before the couple from Florida arrives
- A lumberjack in Florida who had to believe I had everything under control so he wouldn’t get an ulcer
And I thought, I am now at my limit. The universe cannot possibly ask anything else of me, and as long as nothing goes wrong I can handle it.
Sure, I went off food, stopped brushing my hair, and developed a twitch in my left eye but — by god— I was handling it.
Then I walked into work the day I had to leave for my trip to Rhode Island and then come directly back and put the finishing touches on my house before the potential buyers rang my doorbell… and there were fifty balloons being inflated 5 feet from my desk.
Here’s something you don’t know about me… as a general rule I don’t have irrational fears. I like snakes and spiders and mice and clowns and guns and airplanes. But I Fucking. Hate. Balloons. And, okay, I know I’m crazy, and I can only attribute this loathing to the fact hat I hate to be startled. And where there are balloons there is always one asshole who’s going to stomp on them or poke them with a pen or run their fingers over them so that it makes that horrible squeeky I’m-going-to-pop-any-second sound that makes my chest constrict.
And just maybe my co-workers thought about calling the psych ward when I started shaking my fist at the ceiling and shouting, “You think this is going to stop me, universe? You think 100 pink balloons is going to be the thing that puts me over the edge?!” Because 100 pink balloons very possibly was going to be the thing that put me over the edge.
But guess what universe? Not only did I get my house ready to show a lovely couple from Florida in two weeks, and attend 8 hours of contractors classes, and fact check 500 home improvement articles, and fly to Rhode Island and back in 24 hours, and survive an invasion on overinflated pink balloons…
I SOLD MY HOUSE. Using only the internet and a $20 sign.
I thought the actual “letting go” of my house would be a difficult thing, but the truth is I couldn’t have picked a couple** I would want to own Garrison more than this one. They love the house and its unique features, and they appreciate all the work that has been done to it. They admitted after we signed the purchase agreement that when they walked in the house it already felt like home.
And I would live the last two weeks again a dozen times for things to turn out this way, and to know that I had a hand in creating something that this wonderful couple will call home.
*I just want to point out that before MysteryMan left, he re-wired the bathroom light, installed the new sink, stripped the paint from the front storm door, touched up the paint on the house, and hauled 4 loads of junk to Memorial without any assistance from me. I did not, by any means, manage to get all of this done by myself.
** They were so awesome, in fact, that when I asked them to reenact the ceremonial removing of the for-sale sign so I could get a picture for my website, they didn’t even bat an eye. Meanwhile, MysteryMan rolled his eyes at the lot of us.