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

Operation: Bathroom Impossible

The goal: Regrout the tiles around the bathtub. Caulk the bathtub.

The plan: Remove, replace, and seal grout while Natalie and Adam are away in France.
Monday: de-grout
Tuesday and Wednesday: re-grout
Thursday and Friday: let grout cure
Saturday: seal grout
Sunday: let sealer cure
Monday: begin showering in own home

The reality:
Remove grout. Find wet tile backing. Schedule (union) retiling to the tune of $1500. Order tile. Decide to update 60-year-old sink. Choose new sink. Choose new faucet. Choose matching bathtub faucet. Schedule tile work.

Decide window needs sill. Watch Dad pull off window frame. Schedule carpenter. Reschedule tile work.

Step-father-in-law decides to install new sink drain. Demands to replace bathtub. Replaces hot water pipe to bathtub. Watch as carpenter installs new window frame. Listen as SFIL puts off putting in the bathtub. Reschedule tile work.

Rip off 60% of the tile. Remove furring down to the studs. Learn how to cut fiberglass. Replace insulation. Watch as SFIL shatters the bathtub, cuts large hole in the floor, and removes bathroom door. Sit in new bathtub in living room. Install new bathtub. Prime new window frame.

Watch tile person tile. Rejoice and be glad. Find tiles missing. Find toilet paper holder useless. Find gouge in door trim. Meet with Head Tile Person. Reschedule more tile work.

Await tile person’s return. Watch tile person leave. Find that the door trim is still gouged. Thank Maude you haven’t written them a single check.


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