I was able to put away everything yesterday and our house was free of workers. I could see the counters in my kitchen, and I even wanted to clean them. As I put this house into order something extraordinary happened in my body. The tension released from an autonomic center that I can’t control. All of my insides had been seized up during the week. And finally, my muscles began to work for me, and energy began to flow. I looked back over the week and realized how tired I was all day every day. I was wondering if I should go to the doctor because I was so short of breath. The disorder in the house wiped me out and shut me down. I felt myself come back to life as I established a neat and tidy view. I could feel my breathing open and go down deep. It felt so good to take a deep breath over and over without falling short. The oxygen was able to get to my muscles and my mind and I felt alive, like myself. As I felt myself open up it was then I realized the level of tension and anxiety I was feeling from living in chaos. My house looked like what the hoarders do on tv, and it literally, physically shut me down.
Now that it’s all back together and put away I can see the extent of my stress. Every part of me stands in a corner horrified to realize how undone it made me feel. I think it’s fascinating that mental emotional stress can cause such physical responses. I can’t argue with my shortness of breath and lack of energy. That was real. So as I tremble in the after effect of this ordeal, I am scheming how to avoid this ever happening to me in the future. All I can think, is if we had the apartment this week for the kids it would have been so much better, then we wouldn’t be trying to live in the disaster area. The week before they were staying at the apartment and this place was worse then than it was this week. But I wasn’t physically shut down by that. I dare say if there is ever another time that we have to move (pray for Craig if he ever has to give me this kind of news) then I will not try to live in the house while there are three contractors working in it at the same time.
Sometimes I learn things the hard way. I would rather not, and being a good planner I can usually side step this sort of stress. When my body shuts down I’m not much use to anyone, and there are too many who depend on me. I can’t change some things, like how badly I am affected by this level of mess. But now I am aware of how deeply it affects me, and if I am ever in this situation again, I’ll make sure we are somewhere else. It’s funny at my age I am still learning so much about myself.
I was able to finish the day with the first opportunity to cook in a clean kitchen. The true test of a kitchen though is how well does the first batch of chocolate chip cookies taste. I received unanimous approval through mmm… , crumbs, and eyes rolling back in pleasure. We were able to sit at our table and eat dinner together, then go to the family room and have a movie time. We all agreed, we got through the worst of it. And we are now able to think about life here, not just about moving into the house. I’ve come back to life. Hallelujah.