Thursday, March 29, 2012

Got a Minute for a Major House Renovation?

My house is about to undergo a major renovation. Kind of like the Money Pit except I haven't played the violin since I was 6 and there's no slapstick Tom Hanks in the picture.

The project hasn't even technically gotten started yet and I've been cut down by more narcoleptic episodes than probably ever just in the preparation part. I can't even imagine what all's going to happen once demolition gets underway.

I'll give you as brief a summation as I can of what's led up to this sudden explosion of "Hey, let's clean out this old barn and put on a show!"

My house has polybutylene piping. It may as well be plumbed with McDonald's straws and scotch tape for all the leaks that have sprung up in the 13 years I've lived here. (I was never eligible for the class action lawsuit against this piping and it's been settled already, so thanks for that suggestion but let's move on) There was a leak under the kitchen sink in 2001ish. A leak somewhere near the hot water heater in 2003ish. A leak under the sink in the master bedroom bathroom in 2005ish. And most recently, a leak in the hallway bathroom that I wrote about in December 2011.

The leaks have caused holes in the walls and particle board cabinetry to crumble and fall apart, but that was behind doors that closed and I didn't really think I deserved nice things anyway so I chose to ignore the damage. Including the mold. I know, I'm an idiot. whatever. But this latest leak resulted in a hole in the living room that's about 2 feet big and there's visible mold in the drywall that can no longer be ignored and so the outlaws decided that needed to be checked out. FOR THE CHILDREN.

Upshot of this was an Industrial Hygienist came out and did an air quality check that revealed near toxic results and SURPRISE everything needs gutted and fixed. Including replacing all the plumbing. And all the cabinets. And it all has to be done with HEPA filters and 6 mm vapor barriers and negative pressure ionization and other technical jargon that would make my house an excellent kill space for Dexter if he needed it and I would totally offer that up if I could help select a victim or three.

So I've called people after people, at least 10, to tromp through the house and take pictures and give estimates while I try to explain to them my complicated insecurities surrounding why I've let this go on for as long as it has. My sister and I have been cleaning out rooms to get ready for when we have to evacuate the premises since there won't be any plumbing or walls or anything. I had to go toe to toe with the mother outlaw about Who is Captain of This Ship when she tried to step in and start making decisions for me. Because the outlaws are backing this endeavor as the insurance company is being a dick and won't cover mostly anything that needs to be done.  And because the insurance company is being predictable, it all comes down to the outlaws' Cousin Jimmy and his jug band doing the renovation and rebuild. Which I honestly don't have a problem with as long as they get the job done up to code.

Anyway, every part of this process has been overwhelming and exhausting. And it hasn't even begun. And life has to carry on all around me just like normal because that's what life does no matter how much I'd rather hide under the covers, cocooning for a while.

Because even though this is supposed to be feng shui-ishly exciting and metaphorically and philosophically significant, it mostly makes me feel tired and lonely. And I wasn't prepared for that.

2 comments:

Always Home and Uncool said...

My old company used to sell homeownership as the American dream. More like nightmare.

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jodifur said...

That sounds miserable.