Tuesday, April 8, 2008

The Day My Heart was Ripped into a Million Tiny Pieces

It was Monday, the first day of spring break. This was THE DAY- the one I'd been anticipating for a very long time. Swimsuit shopping day. As I've discussed before, I'm cheap. I won't spend much money on myself, but I will spend gift certificates. I'd been hoarding, and had built up eighty dollars in Macy's credit. Add that to what I'm actually willing to spend, and that should get me something cute!
I had visions of a halter tankini, 'squishy-up' and 'sucky-in' in all the right places. The dream suit. I've been working out since August. If there was ever a time for the ideal body and the ideal suit to meet, a perfect storm of perkiness if you will, this was it.
It was also my husband's day off, so we were busy. We painted bathrooms half the day, fed four missionaries, and got everyone busy cleaning up. The mall was closing in a couple of hours when I grabbed my purse, and scampered off to my desk to get the precious loot.
Only they weren't there. Nothing was there! My desk was clean! The blood fled my face, and I rifled through my cubbies frantically muttering "They're not here! I could swear I left them right here!" My husband sauntered by and pulled out a paper from his wallet. "I found this on the floor while I was cleaning yesterday, is this what you're looking for?" It was one of the eight ten-dollar certificates. "This is ONE of them," my voice began to rise dangerously.
"Were the others in that big envelope from Macys?" he asked, sensing danger, "because I threw that away". I remembered in a flash that they were indeed safely in the envelope. Shoot. But hope would not die so easily. "The trash! It's not garbage day." I dash out the door and peer with scrunched-up nose into the smelly bin.
"Sorry, it looked like a statement, so I shredded it."
"Shredded it?"
That was when it happened.


All my hopes, my dreams, my perfect storm of cuteness was gone, just like that. Torn from me, into a million tiny pieces.

So what did I do? Let me just say that I am a very patient woman. Really. But this was too much. My house has been torn up for almost three months. All that time, I've been sharing a manky ghetto toilet with 7 guys. I've had no closet for two weeks. In fact, only the non-family members have closets. Take a second to consider what that's done to the laundry situation!

I lost it. I started spouting off things about who does the paperwork, and who has no business touching said papers, and shoving things off my dresser. The tote of summer clothes, the box of scarves, the bag of my husband's childhood marbles, you name it, it went flying. It was very therapeutic. Before long, my rage subsided, and working together, we had a 100 pound bag of stuff to give to Goodwill.
I organized a heaping mess that used to be a bookshelf before someone else's closet got emptied out on it. I found so many books we'd read as a family that I'd forgotten about. It was like going back in time! So, here are a few of our favorites:

Fascinating context, valuable lessons.

Unspeakably profound

Intriguing premise, very well written. You can't go wrong reading anything by Cornelia Funke.

You'll want to pack your bags and see Venice after this one.

Absolutely beautiful. You'll never see celadon pottery the same way again.

An amazing WWII story, hopeful and inspiring.

These two will make you laugh so hard milk will squirt out your nose. Mental images from these books will be with me forever.

England in the dark ages, what's more fun than that? Superbly done.

Another milk squirter.

You'd think the whole 'little talking mouse' thing has been done to death. At least, I did until I read this. It's surprisingly profound. Wonderful story.

There you go. You all are now the beneficiaries of my own private tragedy. I just hope it was worth it. If just one of these books touches the heart of just one of you, I guess it was. Or maybe not.