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  • Writer's picturemaggiehsmith07

The War Room

Our house is slowly evolving from the shit show that all houses are when you move in. I told Andrea that I feel this may be the weekend/week we turn the corner. Although, I keep walking past the “water closet” to pee in my laundry room. There’s no toilet in the laundry room – except a litter box. I usually bypass the water closet by a few steps and then realize the error of my ways. I’m unearthed my massive candle collection so today my office smelled like “home”. I’ve taken to calling my office the “war room” or, in a nod to my Army days (as if the war room isn’t), the “TOC” which stands for Tactical Operations Center. Because if you think working in/supporting assisted living in a goddamn pandemic isn’t akin to war, you’re wrong.


While I was on call after call today, Andrea went to the grocery store. We tried to order online for pick up, but we couldn’t pick up the groceries until Wednesday. While Andrea was at the store, I had this irrational thought that she’d contract the COVID while at the store and die, leaving me in this new house, knowing no one. So. That escalated quickly. Tonight I found a Susan G. Komen bandana while unpacking and put it over my nose and mouth. “Great. You can go to the store then!” Andrea said.


“Yeah – because you’re not dying and leaving me here alone.” I replied.


“Well. If I died, my company would need an HR person.” Andrea replied and I shrieked at her.


Clearly, I’m going crazy. My mania fuels my unpacking – unpacking is the one thing I can exercise control over. Bringing order to our house. Thankfully, the dump remains open. We schlepped two more loads last night – bring our trip total to 10. I anticipate additional trips this weekend. The movers packed our home indiscriminately. I’ve unpacked crumpled up toilet paper (it occurs to me as I write this that I should have saved that scrap), bottle caps, and today opened a full recycling bin.


We lost 2 rooms with our move and gained a garage as well as an attic. We’ve purchased basement shelving from Lowe’s, that Andrea had picked up curbside. Sometimes, the unpacking is overwhelming. Where does this stuff go? Do we really need this? I have two donation boxes going for when Goodwill gets back to accepting donations. We’re donating some old kitchen chairs and lamps that were once in rooms we know longer have.

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