Friday, March 11, 2011

Hell in the Hallway

Recently I posted a status update on my fb account expressing that my brain is worn out from working overtime ALL THE TIME to find a home, negotiate with the ex-boss, deal with normal day-to-day motherhood adventures, find a home, feed the family, keep house quasi-tidy and find a home. My dear, wonderful, very real friend Melani responded with a priceless quote:

"When God closes a door, He always opens another one...but it can be Hell in the Hallway."

I love Love LOVE this! Because I'm in the hallway.

My ex-boss has agreed to an eye-rollingly generous $75 rent decrease on this $1650 apartment we're in. Gee. Thanks. That helps us to be able to afford it a lot more. *sigh*

Riah & I have looked at no less than 10 homes sort of in the area that are in our teensy tiny budget and that have enough bedrooms for our passel o monkeys. The good ones were rented, leaving the ones that...well...could work if they had to. But if you're advertising a vacant duplex, please wipe the mud splattered on the wall, repair the hole in the siding & get rid of the mossy carpet on the slippery back deck. The one that we like the most won't be ready for at least 2 months. *sigh*

Have you ever tried to pack the contents of a cabinet with very interested preschool/toddler-aged children around? If you enjoy giving instructions repetetively, reorganizing the cabinet contents multiple times and packing the same doo-dads & trinkets 14 times, GO FOR IT!!! It's lots of fun. *sigh*

When something crazy and life-altering (not life-shattering, just altering) happens, there are normal stages of emotion that people go through: shock, anger, grief, avoidance, tantrums, pouting, etc. (Not necessarily in that order, and sometimes I go back for do-overs in some categories multiple times.) Through the hard junk, there's always prayer, and right when I feel like I can't persevere anymore and my long-suffering is stretched taut, I need to keep going just a little more. Just when I really can't go much further, the Lord provides His miracle.

I'm ready for my Miracle.

I know it's there, I know it'll be good, I know it'll be just what we need or will work for now until something better comes along. And I'd like it sooner than later, please.

'Cause this hallway sucks.

The laundry fairy

You know, I really don't have anything better to with my time than sort dirty laundry multiple times.

Dontcha just love that charming little dimply smile? Goober.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The End...or is it just the Beginning?

This is it.

Today is my last day managing this 45-unit apartment complex. In it, I've conceived twice, borne 2 children, taught 4 to stop at the end of the sidewalk before entering the parking lot, buried 2 pets, flushed about a dozen fish, mourned the loss of a 3.5mo-old angel nephew, rejoiced at the marriage of my brother and the birth of 9 other niecephews, taught 3 children to pee on the toilet, expanded the approved unsupervised play area from the backyard to the courtyard to the front parking lot to the swampy foresty area across the stream, learned to allow the big yellow school bus to take my babies, laughed, cried, and make a home. Albeit a neglected, dirty, biohazard of a home, but a home nonetheless.

Though we do not have a home to move into yet, and we aren't packed or totally organized, I am ready to hand over the keys to the kingdom that I have created here. (I have no idea how many leases I've signed or how many people I've moved out or how many apartments I've shown, but of the 122 people currently living in the 44 occupied units at this complex, there are 5 who were here before I was. 2 old bachelor brothers, 1 retired lawyer who signed a lease in 1987 (he still has chocolate shag carpet), 1 middle-aged single woman and the recently-fired maintenance lead who knows more about this property than anyone in the world.

I am...

...Feeling hurt, hopeful, angry, mournful, resentful, excited, nervous, relieved, frightened.

...Resenting the way that I was let go, without the personal consideration and professional courtesy that I deserve after the 7 years of sacrifice that my family and I have given.

...Celebrating not having to pick up other people's litter and cigarette butts, pick up after their lazy children, answer the door at every knock, forward my phone when I leave for vacation, and pussyfoot around a boss who may or may not be about to bite my head off at any given moment.

...Anticipating teaching my children what a clean house is, spending more time with them, staying on top of the laundry, getting more disciplined about using my time wisely, playing outside, teaching Lee to read, and having more time doing what I want to do, which is be a fabulous mom.

A handful of years ago, Abby was next to me as I was working at the computer and asked, "Mom? When we buy a house will you not spend so much time on the computer?" At that moment, I knew that my job was affecting my family. They notice the time away from them. They notice that I put them off because I'm working on something. They notice.

While the title of this post could have been "Up Yours" or "Kiss Off" or some other genteel ladylike phrase (and it would have if I had posted this morning), I recognize that Life may currently have me looking at an end, but it's also put me right at the beginning.

Of something.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

On the ball!

This morning our friend Mei is visiting for a short play date. Lee invented a game called "Stand On The Basketball Behind The Couch Then Fall Off Dramatically And Make Mei Laugh."

It's a pretty good game.

As I sat and watched, cuddling a grumpy wakey Cora, I almost made a comment about Lee's fleeting proximity to the ball, and I caught myself, noting the idiomatic play on words that would go right over his head.

And that got me to thinking.

Why the heck does "on the ball" mean being in control, and having everything going the way you planned it?

Because as I watch my son stand on the basketball--using the back of the couch for support--it sure doesn't look like he is in control! When a person is standing on top of a ball, balance is elusive and gravity becomes the seemingly most powerful force, wreaking havoc on the grace, control and 'plans' that the person atop that orb may try to possess.

Which gets me thinking about my own life and its current events. And you know what?

I'm totally on the ball!!!