Friday, June 21, 2013
The day before the movers were to show-up the Mr and his childhood friend from Jamaica headed off on a road trip to South Lake Tahoe. Through a college program in Jamaica she is able to be placed in various places during the summer to work here in the U.S. This trip brought her to our neck of the woods. Yup, worst timing EVER but I was secretly happy she arrived as the Mr was beaming with joy. This was the first visit from anyone back home.
With the two of them out of the apartment I got busy with the final packing. Of course, at this point I threatened to put it all in the backyard, toss a match and let it burn. O_o
A friend of mine came by and unmounted our television from the wall and then mounted it at the new place. Even though I offered to pay him his hourly rate he refused and said to call the next day if something came up. What a sweetheart ... he saved me $300 by doing this. Yup, Best Buy was going to charge me that much to do the same thing. I'm still trying to figure out a thank-you gift!
The cable guy installed cable/phone/internet that afternoon. It took HOURS. Although he was a nice enough guy I just wanted to be quick and easy ... it wasn't but he got it done so I was thankful.
That night, I took all four of the furry ones to the new place. Their anxiety levels were off the charts and my insides were twisted with concern. I stayed with them for hours at the new place but not much I did reassured them that all would be okay. The babies were fine, they took it as one big adventure so played and played in all the open space. Our two older boys were temporarily traumatized. The vet said they'd be fine as long as some of our stuff was in the new place and we spent a bit of time with them prior to leaving them overnight. Ya, I'm not sure her meaning of "fine" is the same as mine. In the end, they made it.
The day of the move I was up EARLY. Early enough to go out to pick up a cup of coffee and come home and have a hot breakfast of scrambled eggs. I was determined to eat healthy through this process and I would need all that protein too.
Throughout the years with the office and my bosses personal moves we've always used Delancey Street Movers. Knowing they are the best, I too hired them for this move. Delancey Street is a nonprofit organization that helps individuals help themselves find a better path in life. Here's a link if you are interested in learning more about the foundation. I can't say enough good things about them and the crews I've had the pleasure of working with over the years.
True to form, my crew showed up an hour early. HA! I was completely ready to go. They were thrilled that I had reserved parking for them on the street too. Many people don't know that can be done and is more cost effective than paying for tickets. We finished the preliminary paperwork and walk through in record time after which they got busy. Here's where it gets awkward for me - standing around as they do all the work - it just not in my nature. Loading up was the easiest part - I lived on the ground floor so they didn't have stairs to deal with and everything but the two floor lamps were boxed. Plus I used manageable sized boxes that didn't weigh 1,000 lbs each.
After they finished loading it was time to head to the new place. I found my furry ones doing well. The older boys were still stressed but nothing had been torn up or "marked." I was able to love on them prior to the movers showing up which made us all feel good. Luckily there is a small room off the kitchen that I kept them in during the move.
After the walk through they started loading in the boxes and furniture. It was all going smoothly UNTIL it was time for the couch. My initial concern about the banister was soon forgotten as the couch fit up the stairs just fine but getting it in the door was another story. Here enters my second panic attack. Our couch has a sofa bed it so it's heavy which didn't seem to phase the guys but it wore them down when they had to twist, turn, flip and take it up and down the stairs multiple times. I had no backup plan if it didn't fit so I paced and nearly got sick - my stomach was in my throat. The couch is relatively new - less than a year old so we wanted to keep it but not have to store it.
After many failed attempts, they got to work on taking the feet off - that was a job too. At this point their boss at home base called my cell phone to check on progress (crews are not allowed to carry cell phones on the job). We chatted and then I gave the foreman the phone to which he said, "at the moment I'm getting my butt kicked by a couch." Then there was silence, a few huh's and then he hung up. He looked at me and repeated the message from the boss - "breath and it will come to you." At that moment I could have cried ... such a simple message - a message for life - and this man standing in front of me said, "don't worry I won't leave here until your couch is in your new apartment. I promise you that." An hour after the battle started they put my couch down in the living room. When I mentioned that anyone else would have simply given up their heads all snapped and the foreman responded with, "we've given up too much in life, we don't take the simple or easy way out anymore - that's not who we are." SERIOUSLY!?! I just wanted to put him in my back pocket and keep him.
The move took longer than anticipated and it cost A LOT more than I thought it would but I was prepared and it was worth every penny! Before they left one of the crewmen asked about the cats and commented that they didn't get to see them. Another one asked about their names and instantly knew the Irie was a Jamaican name. It was one of the sweetest things ever!! In the end, they both came up stairs so they could get a peak at them.
After they left I laid down on the floor and just took a minute to actually breath and to take in what had just happened. It was over and I was officially on the other side. It didn't even matter if I was surrounded by boxes and that I wasn't real sure where the bed linens were ... I had made it.
Now that I had made it to the other side there much to do. What comes next? The cleaning of the old and the unpacking of the new. Where was I on my wellness journey? Had I lost? Gained? Maintained? Stay tuned ... Part 3 has answers and so much more.
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
So much has happened in the last few weeks that my head is still spinning.
After ten and half years in the same apartment - five of which were spent with the Mr living there - it became clear a change needed to happen when I started feeling trapped and like I was suffocating.
Change may be constant but darn it, it's scary! I'd built a life in my small community and this home was the only one the Mr has known after his immigration to the U.S. Yet, I was determined to move forward and find a bigger unit, within our price range, in a safe neighborhood and near public transportation. That IS a tall order when you live in the bay area but I was determined and I kept repeating my criteria over and over again. THEN it happened, the universe responded.
Nestled in Old San Leandro is a small 10-unit complex that is a flash back to when they knew what character meant and people didn't want to live inside a box. I was the first to respond to the add and we were the only couple to see the unit. The others kept asking about it, setting up appointments and the cancelling the appointments.
The Mr's first reaction to the place ... I don't like it. WHAT?! Unable to actually communicate his emotions a small war began. I took my best friend down the next night to view the place to make sure I wasn't making up the fabulousness of the place and she confirmed what I was feeling - it's fabulous! With 24-hours of the Mr seeing the place his mindset had changed and he was all in. The adverse reaction came from being scared of change, moving to an unknown area and leaving the only U.S. home he'd ever known. Well, now, that's completely understandable!!
Within a four days we had inked the lease, slapped down some cash and the apartment was deemed ours. Confetti did not fall and there was no happy dance on my part though. I went into complete panic mode. I silently worried about EVERYTHING! My worry and paranoia ranged from maybe the property manager wasn't who she said she was and I was giving the wrong person deposit money and the apartment wasn't really ours and progressed on to what if the NEW couch doesn't fit up the stairs and in the front door.
I had a panic/anxiety attack one night about the couch that nearly sent me over the edge. I finally had to go to bed to shut down the madness in my brain. When I finally talked to the Mr about the situation he initial was upset about the prospects of the couch not fitting but we then came to the same conclusion ... it's a couch - nothing more nothing less.
The packing started out strong. Having moved my office and boss a number of times I had access to boxes and I used every last one of them and then some. So much stuff! I purged and donated as I packed but we still have too much stuff. I'll deal with that soon enough.
The property manager was gracious enough to give us keys the weekend prior to our actual lease date. This was great because I moved all my kitchen items over prior to the big move and setup the kitchen. I have A LOT of kitchen items that are put to use everyday due to the fact that I cook almost every meal. Eating out for us is a true treat.
While all this was happening I was on the phone constantly with vendors etc to change addresses and services. That's a job in and of itself! To stay organized I started a notebook that has saved the day more than once.
The Mr moved most of his clothes over prior to the big move. Again this was to help save money when it came to the movers time. Plus, he needed something to do! :)
With all this madness happened we had an unexpected house guest arrive from Jamaica. The Mr hasn't had a friend or family member come visit since he moved here five years ago and then two days before the movers were to show up a friend was suddenly at our front door.
Plus! We adopted the foster fur babies. Lilly and Tuff joined our family which made us a house of six. A little crazy but I can't imagine life without them.
What's next? Well, the move of course and yet another panic attack and so much more. Stay tuned for Part 2.
Thursday, June 06, 2013
When faced with life changes I can either bend or break. I can either be overwhelmed or I can learn to deal. Over the past two weeks I've found myself taking a moment or two to take a deep breath and center myself. It's either that or the anxiety will overwhelm me.
Here's what's been going on:
Yup, we got the apartment we looked at. Packing, purging and general maintenance is happening. Plus, coordinating the installation of new utilities and extras and cancelling the old. Arranging for movers and parking permits oh my! Without my notebook of dates, times, vendors etc I'd be lost and completely running in circles.
I've been in the same apartment for over 10 years and it's the only home the Mr has known since moving to the states 5 years ago. It's a big move for the both of us. Well, all six of us ... the fur babies go where we go. :)
I decided to do the move in phases, three of them. Phase one is complete. I moved a large piece of furniture to a friends apartment and took her large piece to the consignment store. A win, win for everyone. On both ends of that move random men happened to be walking by and asked if they could help. Yes, please.
Phase two starts this weekend. We get to take possession of the new place a few days early so I'm moving in the bulk of my kitchen stuff over the weekend. One because I want to set up the kitchen as quickly as possible, two it will free up boxes and three I want the movers to utilize their time with the big stuff. Boil it down and it's really because I want to save money by doing some of the moving myself. There I said it ... ;)
Phase three happens a week from today when the movers show up. I'm not ready for them yet. O_o
The other happenings ... the Mr and I were fostering baby kittens (Tuff & Lilly) after the Mr found them in a box on the roadside. They were four weeks old then ... now they are eight weeks. I say "were" because Sunday I inked the final paperwork to adopt BOTH. We now have FOUR cats to which I was originally opposed to but my heart melted with each minute spent with the new babies. PLUS my older cats took to them within a day or two and are now overly protective of them. Anyway, the adoption fees were waived over the weekend so the shelter processed our paperwork. There were lots of happy tears that day! All my little ones have been rescued after being left outside by their previous owners. A lady at the shelter got teary when I mentioned we are a household of adopted and abandoned creatures - meaning all 6 of us. We have a colorful history!
Pending house guest is arriving the day before the move. Now how did this happen? *SIGH* A childhood friend of the Mr's is flying in from Jamaica to spend one night at our place and then he'll drive her 3 hours East to where she'll be working for three months. Her arrival date has been a moving target which doesn't make me very happy and gives the two of them anxiety.
Next is the Mr's "food program." OH MY! I'm not a fan of it nor am I a fan of the person who "sold" it to him. HOWEVER, he has been on it for over a month now and has found results, eats differently, feels better and promises to stay away from the craptasticness he used consume. Even though I don't like it I have supported him the best I can ... buying and cooking what's on the page and checking in with him regularly about it. He's lost over 20 lbs in the first month and now believes I should try it. No Thanks! The benefit to me is that we no longer have foods in the house that make me want to binge.
Anyway. My wellness journey has continued through all of this. I started taking my thyroid medication and I believe it's helping. I'm told it will take about a month for it to get into my system fully so I wait and see. I'll retest in July to make sure I'm on the right track or if the dosage needs to be adjusted.
Oh I forgot to mention ... Saturday I have a 5K race in the morning AND that afternoon I get to move stuff. It's gonna be a busy AND exciting day. This will be my 4th time participating in this race so I don't get all jittery prior. The only change this year is that I'll take the public bus to the start line instead of driving or having someone drop me off. This morning I made sure I had all my clothes for the day of race ... I thought I had packed them already. HA! Tonight I pickup my race packet.
One of the big things that will change with my move will be my workouts with my fitness friend. We're still trying to figure it all out. Of course, of late she's been cancelling a lot so it might be a natural breaking point. I remain open to options.
Thanks for reading my novel here ... I've been trying to write this for days on end now. A core dump really.
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
I feel like I'm suffocating. Like the plastic bag has been pulled over my head and I'm fighting for air but it doesn't matter how much I fight I can't find relief.
In general, all is good. In micro bits everything seems to be falling apart or at least cracking. Here's how it unfolds ...
The Foster Kitties
In general - it's all about the love, safety and health of the furry babies. I'm okay to let them go when foster care is complete. It'd break my heart but I know someone will love them.
In Micro bits - it's darn hard to care for TWO foster babies and do it right. Feeding, care, cleaning and safety of four week old babies is exhausting and time consuming. The Mr is NOT willing to let them go. He's attached! As are my two older furry babies. I had to take a morning off from work due to the Mr's schedule and not being able to leave the kitties in the kennel for extended periods of time. It was last minute. SIGH
The Boys aka my two older cats
In general - they are fabulous. I love them like mad.
In Micro bits - they have become attached to the two wee ones. So much so that they panic if something appears wrong at any given moment. That's tough to take. One of them likes to wake me at 4:00 a.m. to play or at other random times during the night. Sleep is fleeting at this point ...
In general - I'm healthy and my body is adjusting. I haven't binged in quit sometime now.
In Micro bits - I haven't lost weight for months now. It would appear all things have stalled, again. SIGH. I do. I change. I stay the same. I won't become complacent about it either! I am going to have a bunch of blood tests done to see if is crazy within my inner bits that need a tone up. Oh joy ...
In general - I've come to terms with being a walker vs. a runner. The pressure is off!
In Micro bits - one of my healthcare professions suggested to me today that I might want to cut back on my walking to see if that will allow me to loose weight again. I asked if she could be my taxi service due to the bulk of my walking being for commute purposes. I'm tired of being told NOT to workout and move my body. She also suggested I increase my ST training. It's always fun to micromanage someone else's world, so I think.
Apartment life in the Bay Area
In general - I adore my little one bedroom apartment. I've been in the same place for 10 years plus - I'm comfortable. The location is perfect for all my daily needs. Yet, we need a bigger place.
In Micro bits - Moving is stressful AND expensive. Plus, the Bay Area might be a great place to live but it's also dangerous and expensive. Pick the wrong location and you might be hit by a stray bullet or be knifed by your neighbor. I don't make this stuff up. Plus, rental prices are crazy high. Owners no longer look for the right tenant but rather the bottom line. If you want affordable housing you live in a war zone / gang territory. If you want safety you pay the same as you would for a mortgage but you have nothing to show for it in the end.
In general - it's all good. We are quickly approaching our 5 year anniversary.
In Micro bits - he needs to step it up and pay up. Get a different job and earn a bigger paycheck. He needs to stop talking about vacation ... it might not happen this year and I don't need the pressure of trying to make it happen.
In general - I still have a job. THANK.YOU.VERY.MUCH
In Micro bits - I feel like unemployment is right around the corner due to the boss being a horrible money manager.
Human baby -
In general - it's a great idea.
In Micro bits - are you kidding me? A great reward BUT ...
The Mr has tunnel vision on this one and I'm just standing still. The Mr is of the mindset that it will all just work out so why not move forward. I am so not that type of person!
So ya, everything on the surface is GREAT! Underneath it - in the darkness - I am panicky and suffocating. Once things start to move I think I'll find the release and breath I need. Until then, I just keep fighting.
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