Write In Between

Friday, October 13, 2006

Painting Myself into a Corner

My husband is getting underfoot. Or, more properly stated, his chore list is not intersecting with mine very well.

For you mothers out there, remember when you were trying to get your chores done, or a special project completed, but your little ones' needs keep you busy instead? (Of course, people before things...) Well, I have the opposite "problem." My kids are in school all day, but my husband is home due to a chosen stint of unemployment to find time to look for a "local" job, having previously had a job that demanded way too much travel.

Now, I love this man, enjoy his company and really, there's nobody I'd rather spend a day with. But his chores (besides the findingajob one) are demanding much of my time and collaboration. He has chosen this down time of unemployment to reconnect with his inner-toolman. It's the old trade-off of time and money. Right now, he has the time. In spades.

We are ripping up an old stairway, putting in new steps, bannisters and balusters, ripping up two old floors and installing two new ones, one tile, one wood. The dust is flying and so is my paint and stain brush. But not my schoolwork, my writing, and certainly not my housework. I'm quite a bit behind in my schoolwork (my part-time job) and I am struggling with that.

Right now, our home has more destruction than construction. Through the dusty haze I'm patiently visualizing the completed job. In the meantime, I'm playing Al to Tim the Toolman. I'm on week 3 of smelling stain, polymers, and polyurethane, having previously done the thankless job of scraping down old wallpaper and restoring the walls with fresh primer. The living room is currently uninhabitable due to the supplies, tools and other construction debris--and that's not even the room we are working on. My work clothes need a break and my skin is past the breakout stage here.

There's a tipping point between effectively managing chaos and not. I'm on NOT today. I'm trying to be patient with the slow process and be cheerful about how great its all coming along.I guess I thought these were gonna be "his" projects, and I'd be able to continue doing my own work. Somehow it became a we-thing, and here we are. I know he needs me to be his community right now since there is no job and no daily fellowship. This is a phase. And working at a task every day is good for everyone.

Pray that I don't paint myself into a corner by under appreciating this man's effort.

(And if you don't mind, say a prayer that he finds gainful employment in the next few months. Thanks!)

Copyright 2006 Patricia W. Gohn

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