Saturday, January 03, 2009

Gert Wishes She Was At My House Today

After coming to two parties at my house over the course of two months Bebe called and, hoping I wasn't offended, offered that she had some suggestions about how to make traffic flow and livability better here. I wasn't offended. On some level I was kind of relieved. At her request I drew her the world's most out of scale floor plan, with perfectly accurate measurements, and we set a date.

Today was the day my own private redecorating tornado came to play.

Bebe arrived at 10am. I put her in a car service about 7:45pm. We did take a short walk to the hardware store and to eat a bite at Maggie Brown, oh and we sat down to watch a few questions worth of Jeopardy before she left but aside from that we've been working all day long. I have reduced two SOS pads to nubbins, used up full rolls of two kinds of tape, hammered my first nail into the walls of this apartment (up to now someone has done it for me), run 3 loads through the dishwasher, said "sure!" approximately 72459234302947302420 times, used remarkable few paper towels and scared the crap out of my cats. (Gert, it was while I was SOSing my entire kitchen that I thought of you. I thought, "I bet Gert would find this so satisfying. I bet she'd be getting some sort of kick out of it instead of feeling like she was SOSing off a significant part of her soul.")

I am exhausted. I'm happy, love the new look, but am truly beaten by the process. And I have homework! It's not company-ready yet. I've got instructions and I've made promises and I have lists. I can't even take the photos yet because my homework is all over (and under) the dining room table. However, I'm happily ensconced in my new (seats 8!) living room with my drink on a side table (how grown up!) and I'm feeling pretty lucky that someone would think about me like this and give me the gift of her expertise in this way.

This morning via Facebook Steph, ChemE and I all exchanged a few little words about Mrs. X. She died 2 years ago today. I didn't make the connection until after I sent Bebe off home but this was probably the best way to mark this day. It was tough but good to spend a whole day with one of my Other Mothers. I gave her 2 photos for Christmas presents and they made her cry so I think she really liked them. She talked to me about a visit she made to her family in Calgary in the fall, she giggled at the thrill of spoiling my dog and we solved a cat-related scare together.

Bebe's way is not Mrs. X's way. I can't stress that strongly enough. Their importance to me, though, is comparable. I think of Mrs. X often but, of course, those thoughts are stronger and more frequent around the holidays. It was a tough Christmas and I really, I don't know the word, resented maybe, not being able to hear her laugh and have her hold my hand. While I was thinking of Auntie Blanche I remembered Mrs. X, already ill, coming to the nursing home and participating in an impromptu singalong. In a room of women from the ages of 7 to 96 the one person who knew all the words to to every single song was Mrs. X. I wanted her to teach me all those words.

What I'm saying I guess is thank goodness I have other mothers to ease the loss. I was lucky to have Mrs. X and I'm lucky to have Bebe and that, I suppose, is more than some people even know to ask for.


  1. I'm so glad I could be there in spirit! You know I love that stuff! I wish I could market the skills. Its truly something I feel passion about. I'm glad you found some passion in it too. Use a coaster on the adult drink table! lol! Well done!

  2. I've been sitting here, picturing the layout of your apartment and wondering how it's different now. I can't wait to see the end result!

  3. That's such a wonderful gift!

    I think I'd love to see Wayfarer House get that kind of working over. It's not work I can do; I have no color skills and, although I can see layout pretty well, putting all the decorating pieces together takes a kind of brain wiring that is not strong in me. Then there's the issue of the money required to do anything. GACK!

  4. Good stuff! I'm moving soon. Does Bebe want to help me put the new pad together?

  5. Gert, there's still so much to do. Please send some of your brain chemistry!

    Chili, I can't even describe it. I will post pictures but it's going to take me some time. I've still got work to do.

    Wayfarer, it's so not how my brain works, either. I figured out that Bebe does it based on practicalities. For instance, I'm pretty sure her biggest motivator for this revamp was coming to 2 parties and not having a place to set her drink comfortably.

    Auntie, I know you're strong but are you sure you're strong enough for this? She is actually a force of nature. I feel like I'm in the process of surviving an earthquake. Aftershocks are still coming.

  6. Seriously jealous over here - I could REALLY use the help of a personal decorator!

  7. I cannot WAIT to see the final result! What a gift!!