Friday, April 5, 2019

Phantom Fantasies

Next year I turn 50. That means I spend nearly as much time at doctors' offices as I did when I had four toddlers. Today, when the Specialist du Jour asked me if I had any other questions, I announced, "Yes, actually! I'm hearing voices." 

Eyebrow raised. "Go on." 

"Sometimes I'll be in that half asleep-half-awake stage, and I will hear a voice right in my ear. Loud enough to wake me up. I know it's not real, but it is LOUD."

"Oh!" she said. "That's just called a hypnopompic hallucination. Some people have them. No biggie. "

Eva, next to me, was utterly convinced that it was indeed a biggie. Eyes wide, she said, "Mom!! What?? When?? How loud?? What does it say??"

"Well, yesterday it said," - I got right in her ear - "MOOOOOM!"

She gasped. "Mom! We have a ghost!"

Lucky me! 
Of all the ghosts who could have chosen to haunt us, I got one more demanding kid who yells in my face when I'm trying to sleep! 

Now, I don't know if I actually believe ghosts exist. But presuming they do, I just have one question. Why do they do such dumb things, like, throw books on the floor? Or flicker lights? That's just annoying. Why can't they make themselves useful? 

Where is the ghost who unloads the dishwasher?

From all the late night internetting and B movies I've seen, if they do exist, ghosts come back to earth because they have some "unfinished business" to tend to. Something important was left undone that haunts them after death and they just can't rest till they finish their work and get some closure to float on over to the Other Side. 

If I become a ghost, by this theory, I will be cursed to spend eternity doing laundry. 

Which totally stinks for me. But if your house exists in the celestial vortex in which Dead Missy finds herself trapped, then you just won the spectral lottery. 

Where is the ghost who does the laundry?

This is 2019. I have electricity. A fancy washing machine! A dryer with several settings I've never even used! Clorox! OxyClean! 
Despite all these luxuries, I am forever in the washing weeds. 

And our sisters in the millenia before us, banging stains and frustrations out on rocks in the river, with nary a Tide Pod in sight? Surely every one of them died with yellowed pits and grassy knees right at the top of their Hereafter To Do list. This world of ours should be populated by millions of diaphanous women from every tribe and nation and century earnestly wandering in search of their long lost dingy togas.

{Speaking of clothes. Have you noticed that the Victorian era seems to be the period of choice for ghostly fashion? Why no ghosts in blue jeans? How come no one is on ID Channel telling the story of an evil entity dressed in polyester bell bottoms and sporting a mullet? Perhaps the Spirit of Disco was so terrifying none of them lived to see their experience re-enacted?}

Not one of these female ghosts would bother with silly so-called ghostly behaviors like "rapping on a table" unless a kid were using his shirt for a napkin. And no woman, alive or dead, is going to knock a picture off a wall and just leave the broken glass there on the floor! If a broom and dustpan begin sweeping up that mess by an invisible hand, now you've got yourself some paranormal activity. Lay a rag on the counter, casually mention the dust on the ceiling fan, and hope that your yoga pants wearing ghost comes with OCD. 

Later tonight, if you are lying in bed in the dark and see a shadow of a figure standing at the foot of you bed, fear not! She's just wondering if the sheets need a change. If the closet door suddenly swings open on its own - no biggie!
Your ghost is just looking for that one missing sock.
Bless her heart, she's been looking for it for centuries. 


Friday, March 29, 2019

Our new estate

Chez D #5

I sold a house.
I bought a house.
Then I moved.

Now the way that you just responded to that tidbit of Mis-life info will reveal oh so much about you and your sordid or non-sordid property exchanging past.

If you went "Oh! Congratulations! New house! Fun! Super duper neato for you!" then I know that either a) you've never done the sold-bought-move thing or b) it has been over two-ish years since you did the sold-bought-move thing.

However, if you just grasped my virtual hand and went "Oh. How are you? You need a hug? A glass of wine? Can I bring you a casserole?" then I know that you have done the sold-bought-move thing a) within the last two years or b) perhaps longer, but it was overly traumatic and you still shudder at the thought.

{You are so sweet a casserole would be lovely. Two, actually, because I have four teen-or-almost-teenagers and jeez louise they never stop eating. Rice, please, because I'm trying to go gluten free yet again and I will probably give up soon but humor/support me until then. Yes mushrooms are fine, we love the mushrooms. No allergies...maybe an unproven intolerance but don't worry about it beggars can't be choosers haha cabernet please...}

I am convinced that when moving, just like in childbirth, a blessed spirit of amnesia overcomes our minds and hearts and lo, our very corpora* and causes us to forget both the figurative and literal abuse we endured in order to procure our new humans slash homes.
All painful memories, gone {snap} in a supernatural moment,
when we gaze into our precious new babes slash walk in closets.
Otherwise the human race slash real estate market would {snap} cease to exist.

The last time we sold-bought-moved, it was hellacious.
Like, for real, my moving horror story can top your moving horror story hands down.

In 2013, we bought a lovely home for an overpriced Austin sum, closed, showed up on moving day and ... the sellers hadn't, you know, moved. 
All their stuff, furniture, boxes, still in the house we now owned.
So my furniture? It went in the yard while they took their sweet time moving out of our house that we had closed on a week before.

And the house was filthy. Really filthy. Inside and out. Filthy, like, I told Eva, "I'll give you .25 for every pile of dog poop you pick up out of our new backyard" and she said "Mom I'm at $3.25 but I have to stop or I'm going to throw up"
they left tons of stuff in OUR new house and refused to pick it up and we paid hundreds of dollars to have their junk hauled off and I gave away a lot of it and THEN,
a week later when they asked where an ugly rug was and were told that I gave it away on Craig's List they proceeded to
$UE U$
for $aid ugly rug.

I told you!
Winner winner gluten free chicken casserole dinner!
Yeeeeeea me!!

Comparatively, this move? Piece of cake. We had sweet sellers, sweet buyers, a wonderful friend for a realtor, and it went off pretty seamlessly.

But even a pretty seamless move is a good 7.9 on the stress scale.

But, a week later, we are in.
All seven of us.

A week later, I feel like I've unpacked probably 75,545 of the 100,874 boxes. Each room is a good 50% normal.
I cooked a real meal last night.
I got my laundry room sorta organized.
We no longer have a money pit pool.
We can slash probably never will walk slash will still be late to church.
My closet here is so much better than the last one.
I can't find my earrings or my moisturizer, but...
No one has sued us {yet} {knock wood}
It doesn't feel like home, yet.

But it will. This I know.
Because if I have learned anything, it is that home is where my people are --
whre my little (ha!) people are, and where my big hairy person is.

We are here.
All seven of us.
Sleeping, eating, loving, arguing, already clogging toilets, here.
Which means,
we are home. 

* Corpora, which I googled, is the plural for Corpus, which means body, which every Texan knows because Corpus Christi slash Body of Christ slash Spring Break slash South Padre Island. I'm not a Latin scholar, but I play one on the internet. 



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