Sunday, March 18, 2012

The reason why

Over the last 2 weeks I have been posting construction photos on Facebook.  I find the whole construction process to be quite an adventure and wanted to share it. But it’s also an emotional roller coaster which may not show up in social media slide shows. Linda and I bought a 100 year old house 16 years ago and have worked on it since then.  I had to watch as our sun room was torn down – a room I built for us to sit and have our daily coffee and commune in. We work different shifts so that room was where we kept in touch, and now it is gone. The big oak beams that I wrestled into place have had to make way for the future. A new, modern addition will be added to our creaky old house. Our house has always been a home but it was lacking in a few of the real house amenities. Such as heating, the kind of heat that actually warms up the whole house, not just the 6 foot radius around the pellet stove. I may have to rethink my wardrobe, and no longer live in layered sweats all through the winter.
A new septic system is scheduled to be built right in my garden. I’m seeing this as an opportunity to change, try out different methods – a rebirth of the garden. The 3 story stone chimney had to come down but that is now a pile of rocks waiting to be a retaining wall. It’s a giant repurposing project.
But all of this is the “what” of the project, not the why. The reason we are doing all of this isn’t that we really need more space for the 2 of us and no, it’s not to build a new space for an even bigger piano (I keep wishing- there’s a 9 footer out there with my name on it, I know). Linda’s parents are getting on in years and her mother has Alzheimer’s. They still live in their home of 41 years and Linda has been going out every other weekend for about a year now to help out. The time has come for them to move and it made more sense to have them come here than a retirement community 2 hours away.  Sharing the care makes the most sense and keeps the family together. I’ve been working in the medical care field since 1969 so this will be a way to make use of my skills in my own life. It will make it easier for the rest of the family to visit and have a place to stay too. And another perk for me, Linda won’t be leaving me every other weekend.
So yes, our living situation is going to change. It will be harder in some ways but I see it as a chance for growth – repurposing our lives.