Monday, September 21, 2009

Home Sweet Home

Have you ever seen
the destruction that a tornado
leaves after it spins like crazy
across the countryside?

Well, that's what my
house looks like inside.
And I'm ready to go to the
cellar now and hibernate
for a month or so until
things are tidied up a bit.

We are getting new carpet
in most of the house next week.
And I'm sorry if it sounds like
I'm bragging,
because I'm not.
I've waited almost ten years.

In all that time,
I've resorted to throw rugs,
the Rug Doctor, spot remover,
Resolve, and creative furniture placement.
And, since most of my floor has been
the original plywood-
I've had splinters, cold feet,
and a deflated ego.

Face it- every person has their priorities.
And carpet has never been one of ours.
When we built on a few years ago,
we just never got around to finishing
the entire project.
Probably was mostly a money thing-
but it was also a complacent thing.
We just got used to the way things were.

The grand kids were spitting,
little crawling babies back then-
and carpet would not have fared well.

Anyways- on to the story.

Since this major historical event
is to take place next week,
every single thing-
furniture- clothes-knick-knacks-
EVERYTHING in six rooms
has to be removed
and placed in the garage.

Think about it.
Scary, isn't it?

Saturday we tore out the old carpet
and it was like an Oklahoma dust storm.
I could have planted an oak tree
in the residue underneath that
old padding.

But it also brought back memories
of all the work we've put into this house.

When we bought it several years ago,
it was 900 square feet.
There were no walls-
only two by fours framing odd shaped rooms.
My daughter Becca even fell through
the floor in the bathroom.

We rewired, re-plumbed, removed,
repositioned and remodeled the whole place.
And all the kids did their part.

It was a team effort
and the results totally satisfying.

This morning I walked across
the old wooden floor
in the living room
and recalled the first time that
my husband and I came here.

We huddled together in a dark closet
that was positioned in the front corner.
I held a flashlight as he attempted to
find the fuse box.
It was cold and dark
and the place was creepy.
I kept imagining a monster hiding
in that closet behind us.

The next few months
we ate drywall dust,
had crock pot meals,
had Fiberglas insulation
stuck to our lungs,
mashed fingers,
poked heads,
and were bruised, beaten,
and battered.

The coffee in our cups
turned to ice.
We worked in layers of clothing-
and at one point I was so inflated
with coats and gloves and
scarves and insulated coveralls
that I had to go through the
doors sideways.

We were zombies then.
But it was all worth it in the end.

The result wasn't fancy or rich
or fashionable or cool.

It was just home.

Where the sheets were clean,
the coffee was hot,
the blankets were warm,
the laughter was loud,
the food was good,
and love was infinite.

I feel like I'm in Phase 2 now.
I'm getting tired and beaten down.

But at least the closets are getting cleaned.
I'm finding bank statements
from the twentieth century
and baby books
and old poetry
and greeting cards
(that I've kept for what reason?)
and memories packed away
until now.

I really could have gone the rest of
my life without new carpeting.
But it might feel nice to roll out of bed
in the morning and feel that
cushy rug under my feet.

And know for certain
there are no monsters hiding
in the closet.