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Archive for July, 2013

Summer is a time for the pool, for sunshine, more relaxed schedules, and making a conscious effort to spend more time with the people you love.

For us, this summer has also involved a whole lot of purging out the clutter from our house: clothes, papers, junk mail.  And yes, even a couch.

The sofa we bought ten years ago became a giant dog bed after R passed away.  Every week the same routine.  I remove couch cover, bleach and wash it, vacuum the couch, I put a cover on.  Dog curls up at one end, me and N at the other.  Gradually, over a period of days, dog works his way toward our end of the couch, and sleeps on it during the day when we are out, and at night, probably.  I take the cover off and bleach it, vacuum the couch, replace the cover, dog gets on, moves over, and so on, and so on.  Endless washing and vacuuming.  No more.  The dog looked extremely depressed this week as I dragged the couch through the living room, hall and den, then out on the patio, into the carport, and then the garage, where it remained until our super awesome private trash people picked it up yesterday.

For the past few months, there have also been many trips to Goodwill, a short drive to the church activity centre to drop off R’s clothes and shoes for the  Lord of the Streets,  endless visits to the recycling plants to drop off countless loads of shredded paper, innumerable plastics and flattened boxes  – paint, old chemicals, junk mail, old medical and financial files;  finally I can see my kitchen counter and our house is beginning to look less like a jumble sale and more like a home we can enjoy and host friends and family in again.

In the midst of patting myself on the back for my achievements yesterday, I discovered an old People magazine on my dining table – underneath which were lurking a stack of 2012 Christmas cards (enveloped, addressed, but not stamped), and another stack of We’re So Glad it’s 2013!!!! cards looking at me in an accusing way.   Ah well.  Nothing a sharpie and a new envelope cannot fix when the time comes for the holiday season again…..

My late husband used to tell me I had a permanent sign on my head – the one that reads – Don’t Bother Asking, I’m Fine.  And yes, several friends had offered to help with the couch.  As usual, however, I stuck the sign on my head and hauled it out myself.   Changing the car headlamp the day before took longer and involved more swear words, for sure.  The rush of adrenaline and relief that comes after achieving something great is akin to no other feeling one can have.   Some people run a 5K or a marathon, others deliver a new royal prince, or pass a final exam, and get that feeling.   In my case, it it came when I managed to change the headlamp one day, and move the couch the next.   Welcome to the New Normal.

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