Wednesday, October 08, 2014

All I Really Need To Be Complete. And Completely Happy.

I need a warehouse.

A warehouse near my house where I can store rows and rows and stacks of wooden kitchen chairs in chippy blues and beiges. Hutches accented with decals stacked up to the ceiling. Drawer fronts with green glass knobs. Wooden medicine cabinets with warped mirrors and bevelled edges. Rocking chairs, stained glass windows, trunks, old sewing machine cabinets, chrome chairs and tables, church pews.

Real hardwood floors.

Real kitchen cupboards.

A row of checkered and floral men's bow ties arranged vertically on the dining room wall. (oh wait- Got That!)

I need a dishwasher that works on all the settings- not just "china". I don't really have china, unless you count the ecclectic collections of lovely old glass bits that I don't store in my warehouse because I don't have one.

I need a kitchen without holes in the walls. Plus a new paint job.

I need a bathroom that doesn't double as a laundry room, a walk-in closet, a pet center, and a dump. I also need that horrible green color to GO AWAY. I need a vanity that isn't warped from an under the sink leak that's gone unattended for only around ten years.

I need cleaning staff.

I need a deck!

For eleven long years, I put up with the Ugliest Deck In The World. I endured promises and predictions and plastic lattice. This spring I watched in immeasurable joy as the deck was sliced away from the house.

And then.

The problems. The papers, and permits and phone calls and waiting.

I can't speak of it, in fear of triggering repressed emotion and memory.

Suffice to say that its OCTOBER-FREAKING-EIGHT and I don't have a deck. You can't hardly expect me to be happy. "Joycie no happy", as the day kids delight to say.

To really be complete, I need my own workshop. A place with plenty of natural and unnatural lighting, shelves of colored fabrics, and my seven sewing machines all set up in a row. I need huge, blank walls on which to pin inspirational quotes, pages out of favorite books, swatches of vintage everything, old clocks, embroidered kitty cats in frames, giant old mirrors, and glass cuboards procured off kijiji for $40- or less.

I need to stop craving multi-grain cheerios, slabs of pumpkin pie (ever), homemade bread with crunchy peanut butter, and all food in general. So I can get back to my birthweight and lose the weird bulgy belly thingie that turning 40-something has produced.

I need a car. Something like the chevette that I drove in my twenties with the broken off stick shift and the hole in the gas tank that only allowed me to fill in $5- at a time. Back when $5- could get you out of your driveway. The one that couldn't go through puddles because the water would get into the hole in the gas tank and I would stall in the busiest intersection of Winnipeg at rush hour. Okay. So maybe not all those dramatic things, but I need that general feeling of youth and optimism that driving an impossible car provides.

I need three pendant lights from many perusals through many thrift shops in rural Manitoba. I need them hung in a cluster in my living room, and the husband willing to do it and tolerate it.

Right. Got that. Whew.

I need a door handle not slathered in duct tape. But not until I retire in ten or more years, ever since that incident when I went to the garage for a loaf of bread and the tinies locked me out of the house, and then went downstairs to line up on the couch and watch cartoons where they couldn't hear me knocking on the door. Ever since then.

I also needed baseboards in my kitchen. It had only been eleven years, so it wasn't particularly troubling to me that I didn't have any. But this summer when Brian wasn't building the deck that we don't have- he built baseboards! Its almost enough to make me happy and complete forever. almost.

Except that I need a haircut. And color.

I need pants without butt crack, and dresses. I only have twenty-five dresses. I need a kitten. My cats aren't kittens any more, they're all worn out of kitten hood and it just isn't right. I need my dog to stop loving me so much and to quit following me all-the-freaking-everywhere. Its annoying and makes me feel like I could never possibly ever be enough to fill her bottomless doggie tank.

I also need help parenting. My kids are amazing, what with their disinterest in suicide bombing, dating, bush parties, intravenous drugs, sleeve tattoos, witchcraft, appearances, and expensive running shoes. But still. They're likely full of all kinds of endless, bottomless potential that I have squandered with my most prolific answer to pretty well all their questions since they first arrived- "I don't know". And then, more recently- "I don't know- go ask The Googles". Recently it came to my attention that my son, aged 16, didn't know how to release the seal on a jar of home-canned salsa. I mean- what kind of mother does he have?

I need to stop having the dream where I'm at the airport with too many bags and parcels and suitcases, largely held together with packing tape from Dollarama but I've lost my plane ticket, passport, and wallet. That dream always leaves me feeling unsettled, like maybe possibly I'm lost in this life. It has to stop.

I need passion to return to my living. For more than a year now, I've not sewn. more than a year. Can we fathom this? only with difficulty. Meanwhile the UNHCR sends me pictures of moms trying to feed their children, I read a little about Syria (being a bear of very little brain, I read, but much of it looks like blah-blah-politics-geography-blah to my itty bitty blob of grey matter). I've recently read three books on the Holocaust and was struck with nightmarish clarity that people are still living lives that are utterly lacking in kindness, clean water, and nutrition while I sit here and sip my strong, hot coffee and scarf back cheerios and pumpkin pie as though I were the only person in the universe.

And then I read "I Am Malala" and because it was written by a fifteen year old girl, it mostly went over my head- I couldn't understand three quarters of the politics outlined inside. I got the part about her being shot through the eye by the Taliban for having passion and meaning and for tirelessly advocating for girls' education. Which reminded me that one's life should be lived with passion and meaning. Which is what I need- to be complete.

But I don't have a vintage, turquoise colored boler in my back yard with a cute little patio in front of it and some old metal lawn chairs. Which makes passion pretty darned tough to come by. I don't have chickens either. No chickens at all, except the big frozen ones in my deep freezer. I don't even have lulu lemon yoga pants. All the cool kids have them, and I don't have any. I don't want them, but that's not relevant here.

Some days, I don't even have patience. Or a warehouse. I barely even have two cats, a furry bunny, a bright yellow cupboard and chippy blue shelf.

It's pretty obvious that a lot of things are going to have to come down the pike.

Before I can be happy. Or complete.

Or even, completely happy.



Judy said...

I get this.

My dishwasher leaks, and now the floor is squishy.

Something in my fridge smells horrid. but I can't find it.

Peace on Earth seems soo soo very far away.

Anonymous said...

you make me laugh and may that that be enough today to validate your existence. Rosella

Valerie Ruth said...

Geez. This makes my head spin. I'm no professional ... But... Maybe meds? Or fake sunlight induced serotonin?

Unknown said...

It's funny how you occasionally point out the sore spots in your home and yet somehow, when we're there, I miss them completely. I get so very distracted by all the funky memorabilia, the ecclectic creativity, the retro-recycled-resplendence. I get waaaay too caught up in the living room dance party, the laughter around your dining room table and the fabulous food that flows from the kitchen. I apologize. I will try to pay more attention next time.

PS that swag lamp trio is my favorite thing of all!

Laura said...

I still think you sound so intelligent I feel like I need to cram before I can have a conversation with you. Your house is so beautiful and so wonderfully arranged. I am in awe. Glad you're not totally happy and together. :)))

janice said...

I just got a BRAND NEW PLACE with BRAND NEW FLOORS and BRAND NEW WALLS and BRAND NEW APPLIANCES in February - I have baseboards galore, and no squishy floors. Obviously my existence is complete. I am 10 years older than you - so maybe if you wait 10 years . . . .

However, it has come to my attention that my 21 year old daughter does not know how to cook a turkey. We are having a live demo at our place on Sunday with the advice and help of my Aunt and my daughter's boyfriend.

I had a completely different comment written the other day, but it did not appear - I am sure it was profound.

Love your swag lamp trio. One day I will show you the thrift-shop touches in my brand new place.

After I come over and help you and Brian build your deck, you can come over and see all my perfectly level floors and walls.