One of the single most formative experiences in my spiritual life happened before I was about six. My family went to church every weekend. I was required to participate by saying the prayers that I knew and singing the songs, but otherwise I could sit by the kneelers and read spiritual books or look at the hymnal— something quiet that didn’t distract the people around me. I usually fell asleep during the homily. I was pretty sure you didn’t get much more boring than church, but it was never an optional thing.
Maybe the title of this is misleading, and I haven’t even started. Because I spent all day yesterday cleaning— shampooing carpets, and I paid a service to help me, and a handyman to fix things, and it reminded me: I am not my best self when I move. People see the dust bunnies and the things that you can mostly hide, like that you haven’t moved some of your furniture since you moved in, and it is gross underneath those pieces, and you can just feel the judgment. I don’t take those moments well.
So as I’ve mentioned, it’s a busy time. Getting the house ready for market is keeping me more than a little frazzled.
Sunday, I went to my hardware store’s appliance section. I realized that I hadn’t measured the built-in microwave before I got there, but asked the clerk to sell me the least expensive one that matches the other appliances, and asked him how I was likely to get it wrong. Seriously— like, how do people usually get this wrong and have to start over, and we’ll assess the risk that I’ll get it wrong.
There are a few little quirks about me. I’m not a great sleeper to begin with. I’m a bit of an owl, and have a hard time going to bed at a decent hour, and an even harder time waking up in the morning. If it’s hot, I struggle to sleep even more. And if I’m stressed out with a bunch to do? The world is just going to need to up its production of Coke Zero.
So buying the house and selling the house while I work on a project at work that is overdue and address a content shortfall and start pulling together numbers for budgeting during a week of 90 degree days, and oh by the way sick animals? Let’s just say the zombie thing is totally real.
My entire life, I’ve taken the writerly admonishment “Write what you know” to mean write about a life you understand— don’t try to write a story so distant from yourself that you only imagine you know what it feels like.