Tag Archives: Patience

Remodeling Lows

Five years ago, I embarked on a remodeling plan. It took effort. It took concentration. It took determination. And most of  all, it took sweat.

I sculpted. I trimmed. I toned. I selected a new veneer to put on the finished product.

The journey was awesome. And I had so much fun doing it. Watching with ultimate satisfaction the almost daily changes as they gradually occurred with regular frequency over a period of exciting months.

But enough about me.

Now I’m remodeling the guest bath. And the difference in the experience is astronomical.

There is sweat, but it’s mostly the result of a blood pressure spike every time they show up late for a day’s work. Or worse, fail to show up at all. Without a word.

I asked the demolition/rebuilder man to let me know when he was coming over and to not just appear at my door. He said OK. The next morning he called me from my own driveway. I had to laugh. Maybe I should have told him to call me from his driveway, you know, before heading over to my house.

The project is going at a sloth’s pace. It was supposed to be a one-week job, Boss Lady said. She did my kitchen nine years ago. Beautiful. Looks like the day it was finished. So, I entrusted my bathroom to her.

Our house is old with its own little quirks. There’s always surprises when we start digging around, so I cleared two weeks on my calendar. When we entered the third week my patience began to run thin. In two days, it will be a month since the job began. We’re halfway there. Only ten more things to do!

Boss Lady called me yesterday, told me she’d misunderstood. He was on vacation this week. Not next week, as she’d told me when promising it would be done this week. Her promises now have echoes.

We threw in the towel and called in reinforcements. Tomorrow an electrician and a plumber come. I will have a working sink once again. Even that turned into a mission when she made the vanity beautifully wrong for the vanity top I had. crtree

Right now I wish I was with my Costa Rica roving,
tree climbing, travel-writing daughter.
She looks so carefree.

Sigh.

But I won’t lie.

What has been done is gorgeous.

br

Love my new floor in my gray and white bathroom.

Love my new floor in my gray and white bathroom.

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On This Earth

A writer I much admire once wrote, “. . . waiting is the tense in which life is truly written.” Those words struck a chord with me when I read them three years ago. They’ve never left me. And sometimes when I am sitting in my rheumatologist’s waiting room, I think of how true those words are.

Reading Billies’ excellent post on waiting reminds me I meant to write about my time spent in that waiting room. While I was there in May, I came to the hard decision of looking for another doctor. Though things flow at a creeping pace at this office, I arrive on time at 3:30 p.m.

At 5:00 p.m. I see the front desk receptionist walk by me with her purse. She hasn’t yet taken my co-pay. I’d signed in and exchanged pleasantries with her and then taken my seat in the crowded waiting room. Deep into my reading, I only entertain a passing mental query as she goes by. After all, there is other staff.

At 5:30 p.m. the tech who does the preliminary workup, vitals and the dreaded weigh-in, sees me through the open sign-in window. “Did they pull your chart?” he asks.

I shrug my shoulders. How do I know?

He walks around and opens the door for me. “I’m sorry,” he says, as he escorts me toward the back. He chats with me as he works, asking how my writing is going. Fine, I say.

Before I’m shown to an exam room, I have to go up front and give my co-pay. “I can’t take a credit card. It’s after five,” says the young girl left at the front desk.

I shrug again. Not my problem. I’ve been there more than two hours by then. Somehow she gets it done.

I text my husband: “Two hours and haven’t been seen.”

“Unacceptable,” he fires back.

Sometime after 6:00 p.m. the PA comes in and makes himself comfortable. He takes an extensive history, dating from my last visit two months previously. He conscientiously taps onto his laptop my every utterance it seems. He asks me how to spell a word; I tell him. “I hate English,” he says with a sheepish grin. “It has its quirks,” I say.

He spends over 30 minutes with me, typing, chatting. I feel like I’m with family, the whole process is so familiar. With a shake of the hand he leaves me to my reading and waiting.

Around 7:00 p.m. my doctor walks in; smiling, he extends his hand towards me. He’s always smiling and he always shakes my hand. “How are you doing?” he asks. “Sorry about the wait.”

“It’s OK,” I murmur.

He meticulously reads what the PA wrote, then reviews certain comments/complaints. Satisfied with my responses, he asks me to step up onto the exam table.

He bends every one of my fingers by turn (ouch), then has me lie back and proceeds to bend my legs, my arms (no problem there), and listens to my heart, my lungs. He guides me to sit up and then checks my eyes and inside my mouth searching for RA’s sidekick, dryness of the mucous membranes. All checks out and he goes back to the desk. I step down and go sit across from him.

He checks his phone researching something for several long minutes, then comes to a decision regarding my current medications. He goes over the protocol with me. “You’re doing very well,” he says with that smile.

Returning his smile, I lock eyes with him for a moment. We are coming to the end of this slow-moving ballet we’ve engaged in for almost a decade.

And I remember why.

Because of him, I remain here, on this earth.

We shake hands and I make my way to the front desk. I schedule my next appointment, then exit the office. It is now 8:00 p.m.

Written for: Weekly Writing Challenge: Fit to Write