Postcards of Grief

Mourning is a process.

Comments on breast cancer by proxy, written by a woman coping with the loss of her mother.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Have you seen my control panel?

The fact of the matter is that I’m sick of not having my life in the rigid order in which I plan to put it.

The tile work is finally, finally done. After taking a full day longer than they had expected, we discovered that some things were just not right about it. Not only were there no tiles around the bathtub fixtures, but they had hacked a piece of the door trim off and placed the toilet paper roll holder such that we couldn’t use it and the towel bar at the same time. Much deliberation later, Brooke and I decided that the missing grout around the tub, the grout splatters on my beautiful maple floors, the slight dents on the other side of the doorframe, the cut and grouted-in switch plate, the putty-covered towel bar, and the one spot near the floor that doesn’t seem to be quite flat all were not worth working ourselves into a frenzy. Two deal breakers: the door frame and the toilet paper holder. Of course, the remaining three tiles around the bathtub fixtures just had to be applied. We wouldn’t consider the job done without them.

The three tiles were put on this morning, and the toilet paper holder was removed and moved. The door frame is not repaired, but the tile people have no money from me, so I’m not so worried about that right now. We should be okay to use everything Thursday morning, God willing. Tonight, there will be paint. Tomorrow, Al is coming over to fix the bathtub drain.

Although we had been under the impression that the bathtub itself was completely functional, we were wrong. Well, if by “functional” one means “being able to drain water out of it without creating a large pool of water in the basement,” then we were definitely wrong. Humph. The sink and bathtub issues should all be resolved tomorrow evening. I’m awfully excited about being able to wash my hands in the bathroom and take a shower in my own house.

This weekend went very well, and Brooke and I are even more excited about getting the house cleaned up and in order for a party in July and a weekend gathering in August. The bathroom will be completely painted this weekend, and I hope to clear out the guest room and paint it before the middle of August.

It was inspiring to listen to Paul and Hope talk about preparing their guest room for Hannah and then preparing Hannah’s old room for the new baby. Hannah is not so much of a baby anymore. She managed to climb out of her crib on Saturday night, and she sustained quite a number of scratches and bruises. She also earned her first case of road rash after running and slipping and scraping her forehead on the asphalt. She seems not to have noticed them, or maybe she just doesn’t care. She has no fear, and this frightens Hope.

Soon, everything will be back in order. Soon, I can clean my kitchen and bathroom and put the couch back where it belongs, the bathtub no longer needing to reside in the living room. Soon, I can have the illusion of a little more control over my life.


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