No….this is not my week. I haven’t had my week for some…weeks. I’m snappy and unpleasant…because things are not going to plan. Niece B has fallen off bike at speed and cracked her shoulder…so spent a day with her in the wonderful St. Thomas’s hospital. Elderly Uncle H is dying…and Mom is very very upset…it’s painful to see a 90 year old so (understandably) upset….she’ll be the last of her immediate family left alive. Having spent weeks deliberating over our new kitchen worktop…it’s out of stock. The washing machine will not fit behind the bi-fold doors of the new utility cupboard. I can’t remember when I last felt so low….blessed with first world problems.
Brickie Carl gave me some advice at the start of this project when I designed the kitchen layout and was trying to fit absolutely everything in, when a large steel pillar was preventing me from doing so. Check the lie of the land he said, and work with it…otherwise you’re forever fighting. I took his advice and am crossing fingers all will be well…but I’m still focusing on my short-term discomfort; still worrying we have made an enormous mistake by undertaking this extension work at all. All amplified by the fact that I work at home, so rarely get away from it.
But…I can slowly, slowly see it coming to an end. The fridge-freezer has arrived and joiner Peter has adjusted things so that the washing machine does now fit! The worktop man called, and with a clever wheeze has managed to get it from a reserve stash. With a bit of luck almost everything will be complete in the next 4 weeks or so. It’s late…but that’s hardly unusual. The only way I ever get out of this mood is by being grateful…grateful for this house, with its lovely high Victorian ceilings, quirky changes in level, stone corbels and bay window; for our obliging workmen, for family, for church community, for the wider community, for shops on my doorstep (including Screwfix for all hardware/DIY needs), for the glorious, glorious, glorious green of the garden in full untamed, lushness as we have not been able to do any gardening; for the baby fox and his parents taking full advantage of this; for friend, A, taking me for walking excursions through London to get me out of the mess.
I’m picturing the new extended space, with my retro cookbooks on one of the new shelves, the garden doors flung invitingly open to the newly laid patio, a comforting gathering of family and friends; snuggling up on a small armchair (which we may struggle to squeeze in)….while we smile to ourselves at having saved loads of dosh by using the old kitchen units.
Breathe slowly and repeat after me: It’s gonna be fine…it’s gonna be just fine.