Getaway Girl Blog

Spoiled Rotten

Man oh man...

Am I ever a spoiled rotten bitch.

I am at the tail end of a major kitchen renovation. After four months of some form of destruction, construction and renovation taking place, new appliances have been installed. New cabinets have been installed. New granite countertops have been installed. New lighting and electrical have been installed. New plumbing has been installed.  We are talking TAIL-END.

Pretty much all that's left to install is the new flooring.

This is where my bitchiness comes in.

For months--no, I take that back--for years, long before I ever pulled a nail or ripped down old wallpaper, I've known I wanted to extend the hardwood flooring from my dining room into my kitchen. It's pretty. It's easy to care for. It would bring cohesiveness and flow to the two rooms that are only divided by a three foot long hallway.

Yesterday, that dream came crashing to a halt. (Dramatic swoon and pause here...)  And that is when the inner bitch really came flying out.

The poor flooring installer, who had come to measure the space, took one look at the old, tar-stained and beyond repair hardwood flooring (which we discovered beneath five layers of old flooring) and said, "You can't put hardwood on top of hardwood."

This, after a different flooring company had come and told me there was "no problem."

And that's when I lost it. 

Somewhere in the midst of my tirade (of which I am not proud, but of which I am not completely ashamed, either, due to circumstances I am about to explain), it occurred to me that I was not bitching and complaining and now raising my voice--a raised voice that is usually reserved only for my cat and my fiance'--because I wasn't getting my way and getting the flooring I have wanted in my kitchen for almost as long as I've owned my house.

No, I was tirading and bitching up a storm over issues much larger than that.

First, I work at home. I spend more time within these four walls than I spend anywhere else in the world. I am here 24/7 and for the past four months, my whole little Patti World has been ripped apart. My living and working space has been covered in dust, has been filled with as many as five construction workers at one time, and has been in some way, shape or form unusable.

And secondly, and perhaps more importantly to me, I feel a huge loss of control. And I am a woman who, if nothing else, is in control of her life. I work for myself. I live by myself. I am probably more independent and self-reliant than most people I know. As my fiance, Mr. Organization, knows, it is very difficult for me to reach out and ask for help. He understands this part of me because it is equally difficult for him to ask for help, too.

And though I have a been a homeowner for almost 20 years, I am not now, nor have I ever been, handy. I can turn a screwdriver, I can hang a picture on the wall and I can pour Draino down the sink, but that is pretty much the extent of my handyman (or woman) abilities.

So, to completely rip apart and demolish a room was a pretty big deal to me. I did the light girly work, such as stripping down old wallpaper, but the carpenter ripped out the cupboards and installed new ones. An electrician rewired the kitchen. I picked out paint color for the walls.

So the thing is this: I feel completely helpless and completely out of control of the destiny of my kitchen at this point, which is a part of both my home and my work place. I am relying on, well, mostly men, to advise me and guide me. To share their knowledge and expertise with me. To point me in the right direction.

And each step of the way, throughout this entire kitchen renovation, I've run into conflicts. Not with me. But with two different contractors who've advised me to take different roads to get to where I want to go.

Who is a gal to believe?

And that, basically, is the biggest source of my frustration. I don't know who to believe. I don't know where to turn. And most of all, I cannot say "Screw you!" to the contractors, pick up a hammer and fix my torn up house by myself.  Therefore, I am suffering gravely from a loss of control.

When the flooring installer came yesterday and gave a conflicting report after another, competing flooring company had given me a different response, my inner bitch came rumbling out from the Batcave.

I am at the end of my rope. And I feel like a spoiled rotten bitch...like a high falutin', high maintenance bitch who can't get her way so she just lost it.

But really I just want my house back. I just want my work space back. I just want the order and comfort and solice I take in this structure back. After four months of living in an unstructured home and work environment, I am rattled. Moreso than I ever thought possible.

My friends tease me and think it's funny when they say, "But you don't cook anyway...why does it matter?" Well, first of all, my kitchen is a big part of my every day life. Just because I'm not Betty Crockering in the oven every day doesn't mean the room is unimportant to me.  And the renovation has disrupted every room on the lower level of my home: kitchen cabinets and trim filled the living room (and there is still a big box of trim there), the old microwave still sits on a stand in the dining room in a place where it doesn't belong. My downstairs bath, which I admit I rarely use, is filled with kitchen utensils and carpentry tools. And my dining room table, which serves as a breakfast bar, lunch counter and formal eatery, is covered with receipts from the carpenter, miscellaneous wiring and warranties from new appliances.

I just want my home back. 

I want it back now.

So this week, I've begun telling everyone, from the flooring installer to the carpenter, that it WILL be done by this Friday. Period. My kitchen will be done. I AM putting my house: my home, my work space, my cooking and dining spaces all back together this weekend. Period.

I am taking control of my life again. God help me if it doesn't happen.


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