Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Life Lessons from the Loo

So, project "bathroom makeover" continues... I worked in their for quite a while last night, and it seems like the more I do, the more stuff I uncover that is going to make more work before we can paint. There are at least four places where they wallpapered directly on top of new drywall, so the wallpaper can't be removed without also tearing up the drywall... so annoying! They also did a poor job of taping the edges of the new drywall, so Philip will have to try and fix that. These facts, added to the heat from the steamer, and the effort it takes to scrape the nasty stuff off meant I was getting Pretty cranky...

(These first couple of pictures aren't very clear because of all the moisture in the air)

I think right about now I was grumbling, "I hate it, I hate it all!"

Not really the safest position to be in, balanced over the bathtub, (while trying not to drip boiling hot water on my toes), holding up the steamer with one hand, and scraping with the other...

Shaking the gunk off the scraper for the millionth time...

During this process I have wished (and we had actually tossed the idea around a bit), that we could just rip all the drywall down, redo it, and then paint. However, although that would save us a lot of scraping, that wouldn't really be a super easy project itself, and would take quite a bit of time and money as well. I just keep wishing there was an easier way! Grrr...

As you can see, this whole situation was Not making me a very joyful or nice person. After a lot of inward grumbling (and some verbal grumbling to Philip...poor guy), I decided that I was just being a grumpy old wimp, who wasn't seeing the big picture and just wanted a way out.

It reminded me of a time back in high school (was that Really ten years ago?), when I was in cross country. I was running a race in London, Ontario, and this particular race had a lot of steep up and downhill running. I'm not really sure why I joined cross country (and ran for two years), because I'm really not a runner... my body really doesn't agree with running for long periods of time. Anyway, about half or three quarters of the way through my race, I started to hyperventilate pretty badly. Running and not being able to breath don't really make a great combination, and by the time my coach came up beside me, I was starting to drop back in the race and was in tears. She said something like "I think you can do this, but it's up to you, if you want to stop, it's your choice". Unfortunately, I took the easy way out that day and dropped out of the race. I remember it like it was yesterday and I think about it all the time. To this day, it is one of the biggest regrets I have. That might seem silly, because the significance of that one race, compared to my whole life, isn't that great, but the feeling of failure, of not "knuckling down and finishing the job" has not been worth it.

So, what does all of that have to do with my bathroom? Well, I think it's kind of the same thing. I've hit a hard spot, and I just want it to be done. When I stopped for a break last night, I was thinking "Wow, Joia, your attitude about this whole thing really stinks, and it is going to need to change or this bathroom is going to get the best of you!" I decided then (although my attitude didn't change right then), that I was Not going to let a stupid bathroom get the better of me! I was going to see this project through to the end and kick it's butt! =)

I also started to think about the many things that I should be thankful for... 1. That I even Have a bathroom.. two of them, even! 2. That we are able to afford to redo it so it looks nicer. 3. That I am healthy and able to work on it myself. 4. That I have a husband willing to watch Keenan (and do the dishes), so that I can work on it uninterrupted. 5. For a God who cares about little stuff like this. 6. For Him giving me the perseverance to see this through.

The Lord must have known I needed a "pick me up", because the last part that I was working on last night (the part over the bathtub on the back wall), went incredibly fast and was fairly easy! What a nice change that was!

All of this rambling has been to say that, through this experience, I think I have learned some valuable lessons, and (I hate to say it but) this whole thing has good for me.


Flakymn said...

Joia, I do not covet you AT ALL.

I will tell you that we had this happen and John just opted to use this really heavy paint that was uneven and cover all the crevices up. It worked well. Not sure if this would work in your case or not.

But I am sorry. If there's anything I can do to make life better, please let me know.

Mom E said...

Ahhh yes, bathroom brings back memories of when I was pregnant with Jessica and Philip (at approx. 2y 6m) was 'helping' me strip down our bathroom walls! I think you may even have a copy of that picture of us working together on it somewhere in your stash of photos....

If anyone can get this project done, Joia, it would be you!

You can do All things thru Christ, who strengthens you!

Mom E.