A Hardship That Never Was

Life has a way of wearing down what it considers my rough edges. It never seems to matter that I like me just the way I am (thank you, Mr Rogers), and would prefer to be left alone with all my quirky imperfections, intact. And how does this consistently unwelcome action occur? Easy. The things I dislike and fuss over the most, I regularly get opportunities to repeat until I finally yield, and say, “All right then; enough“. And make no mistake, all the times I do not really mean it do not count; the universe knows when I am sincere, and when I am sort of, and mostly not really on board.

My current experience in the land of “I do not want to do this, and I don’t know why you can’t just leave me be” has been interesting, in that I could not have been a more reluctant participant, and yet the end result is I actually have had an exceedingly wonderful time, and am feeling very grateful for it.

This said experience all came about when the owners of my apartment complex decided a major renovation to each unit was due. It is a large complex, so much planning went into accomplishing the remodel with as little disruption to the residents’ lives as possible. They have over eighty apartments in five buildings, and decided the most efficient way to get the job done was to work on four units at a time.

From the day I first heard of the plans, I kept my head down, and simply pretended it would not affect me for a long time, because I live in Apartment 42. No need to get all worked up when there were forty-one units ahead of me. Right? Silly me. How was I to know my apartment number was irrelevant, because it happens to be located in Building 1, and of course renovation had to begin in Building 1, because it is Building 1. So, my dreams of being left alone until sometime this summer went up in smoke as I found myself in the first wave of residents to be shuffled out of our apartments.

And what were they going to do with us when the builders were tearing down, and then building up? Why, move us to a hotel for a month, of course. We all had been told we would be given thirty days notice before we had to relocate, and we were provided a list of hotels from which to choose for our little vacations. Since I have dietary needs that prevent me from eating in restaurants, or enjoying the convenience of take-out food, I required a room with a kitchenette, so I could do my own cooking. I chose a hotel that provided a kitchen, and was located in the center of my usual shopping, errand-running territory. If I had to do this, it seemed the most convenient for my needs and lifestyle.

Even with the thirty day notice I had been given, when moving day came on February 4th, I was more than a little grumpy. There were no unpleasant words spoken; however, one look at my frowning face, and clenched jaw muscles gave everyone a big clue as to what my mood was. Fortunately, the owners also had made arrangements for movers to come in and pack up what we needed to take to the hotel, and transport it there for us, which lessened my grouchiness, considerably. By 9:00 AM, everything was packed and loaded onto the moving van, and I was on my way to a month’s stay in a hotel.

Feeling put upon, and indulging the extreme dislike I have for suitcases, hotels, and traveling in general, I was ready to sulk the entire month. But, arriving at my new home away from home with such a dismal attitude was so contrary to my normal, cheerful behavior, I began feeling ashamed as soon as I was in the elevator, riding up to my room. It was a no brainer that I needed to accept the month’s relocation, and frankly stop being so crabby about it.

By the time I found my room, and all my things were brought up to me, I began to realize, one more time, what I believed was going to be a huge imposition was really not a bad thing, at all. It turned out they did not just provide me a hotel room with a microwave, which is what I was expecting. Instead, I have a lovely suite with kitchen, living room with fireplace, nice large bathroom, and a bedroom that has a community-sized jacuzzi in it. The staff have been so sweet and kind, I feel as though I should be doing something for them, in some way, just to balance the universe a little. So far I have refrained from hugging the stuffing out of them all; I do not think they would understand. But, the manner in which I have been treated for the last two weeks has been a balm to a very tired soul, and I am grateful beyond words.

Barring any delays in construction, I will return to my apartment in a week and a half. I realize this experience has been a very gentle sanding of one more rough edge; and hopefully, next time I need to do something that does not appeal to me, I will remember this, and not put myself into such a state of anxiety and bad humor. After all, a month’s worth of reading in front of the fireplace, watching as many movies as I like, and having housekeepers come everyday to tidy up my little place is about as close to feeling like a princess as I have come in a very long time. And it is good to be pampered once in a while, especially when the lesson learned was born out of a hardship that never was.

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About Valleygrail

Native Californian by birth, Pacific Northwesterner by choice. Jack of all trades, master of none; always wishing I could stick with just one thing long enough to become expert. But then what about all those things left unattended? See? Not possible. I love life, my family, friends, a good book, Irish music, rain, fog, and a pint of Guinness. It's a good journey, and sharing with companions makes it even better. Thanks for being with me as I embrace it and you!
This entry was posted in Aging, Baby Boomers, Home, Learning, Life Journey, Moving, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

28 Responses to A Hardship That Never Was

  1. lauramacky says:

    What a great reminder to go with the flow. Having someone clean up after me would be enough to make me a happy camper. 🙂

  2. Doobster418 says:

    Wow, that’s really generous of the owners of your apartment complex to put you up, at their expense in a nicely appointed hotel room with a kitchen and a jacuzzi for three or four weeks, to move for you the stuff you needed to bring with you, and to, at the same time, renovate your apartment. I’m envious. I asked my landlord if he’d consider replacing the single-pain, cheap windows in my apartment with some double-pane insulated windows and he laughed in my face. Can I come live where you live?

    • Valleygrail says:

      That is precisely why I was so ashamed of my attitude. They have done everything to make this as painless as possible, and the whole experience has been so nice. Your apartment landlord is not being very courteous to you, nor very wise in taking care of the property. Of course you can; it only means you have to relocate to Oregon, and become a pluviophile.

  3. Had you only known you would be treated like a princess… 🙂 But I get it there are times when I so desperately want to be grouchy and find myself enjoying something. –Curt

  4. cindy knoke says:

    you rock, quirks make you interesting~

  5. nrhatch says:

    I’m glad the experience has been a good one ~ sounds like an ideal landlord who wanted everyone to have a smooth move.

    I would enjoy sitting in front of that fireplace just now. It’s been a bit chilly this week.

  6. btg5885 says:

    Enjoy your stay away from home. We often build things to be worse than they are. I am glad this was one of those times. Best wishes.

  7. Cynthia says:

    I do the same thing. I’m working on it too. Lots of times I’ll feel grumpy or put out instead of just accepting a situation. I am trying not to “project” outcomes or experiences before they even happen…a work in progress, lol. Congratulations to you for embracing this and enjoying all the new people you’ve met! Happy homecoming to you soon!

  8. beeblu says:

    I’d love nothing more right now than a month to read in front of a fireplace! Hope the renovations gladden your heart. 😃

  9. Isn’t it funny how prayers we have never prayed are answered? It’s amazing how He knows what we need. This is such a beautiful reflection. You’re right. A little pampering is good for the soul.

  10. gpcox says:

    I know its only been a month since you posted, but I wanted to make certain everything was okay by you.

    • Valleygrail says:

      So thoughtful; thank you! Sometimes life gets in the way of our avocations, and that has been my experience this past month. It is my hope things are settling down, and I can think of things to write, again. Thank you again for the concern.

  11. I was wondering about you, too. But then I figured out that I haven’t been getting your blogs via email, so I resubscribed.

    • Valleygrail says:

      Thank you! I have been in the middle of a remodel of my apartment since the 4th of February, plus helping with my 91 year old mother who is in very poor health. Sometimes life just gets in the way of those things we love. I miss you all!

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