did i tell you about wednesday yet?

One of Dr. R's favorite ways to pass the time while I am snuffling incoherently on his couch is to ask me questions intended to get me to be more reflective and less reactive. At least I think that's the purpose. Maybe he's just trying to distract me so that I will STOP. WHINING. ALREADY. Last session he kept asking me "But who is nurturing you?" I rattled off the poor souls who are currently being sucked dry because they haven't yet had the sense to run away or pretend they aren't home when I call this person and that person and her and her and him and threw in her for good measure. Don't want it to seem like I'm over burdening any single person, now do I. He nodded, as he does when I've given him an answer but not quite answered the question, but didn't push it. Which was odd because he's nothing if not pushy. But we were nearing the end of our session, so maybe he just didn't want to get me started again. The tissue box was getting dangerously low. "Allergy season" and "therapy" must ring beautifully in the ears of KCWW, Inc shareholders. But I digress.

On my way home I was struck with the realization that I didn't, couldn't, count myself in that list. Blah blah blah, epiphany, blah blah, resolution, blah blah blah, squared my shoulders and decided that needed to change. If I'm going to have a chance at beating this monster, I probably better start taking better care of myself. Better sleep, better food choices, more sun and exercise, etc. And topping the list, being a little less rigid with myself. Yes, the kitchen floor probably does need to be swept daily, but it's probably not going to catch on fire if I wait until after I've had my coffee. I am not a horrible lazy slob because I choose to eat breakfast before cleaning out the litter box. That sort of thing.

I did pretty good with it through the end of the week and then through the weekend. By Monday morning I was almost reflexive as I shooed away the muttering gnat that wanted to remind me that it was 10:30 and all I'd done was put together a (rough) blog post that I didn't even take time to re-read and edit before publishing. Sloven. Shoo, shoo. Go away.

Tuesday = more of the same.

I'm pretty anal careful about the amount of screen-time that I get when Aaron is home, though, so Wednesday morning looked decidedly different. Balancing what needs to get done with what won't make me pull my hair out because he's along is sometimes tricky. But the service bell in the Jeep had been dinging for almost a week and mygod the buildup of bug-guts on the front of the poor thing! So off we went for a day of car maintenance.

It was bright and sunny, the perfect day for plunking in coins and pressure washing things off things, so our first stop was the car wash. An hour or so later and we were on our sparkling, spot-free, debugged, vacuumed, and freshly squeegeed way. Next stop? The local auto shop, aka Aaron's very most favorite place in the whole! wide! world! The guys at the shop love Aaron because he's cute and precocious and uses words like "transmission" and "axle" and "ignition" (mostly) appropriately and has told them every time we go in there that when he grows up he wants to be a m'canic because it's the coolest. He loves it there because they like to show him the POWER TOOLS! and POWER CORDS! and LIGHTS! and SWITCHES! The cars are UP IN THE AIR! There's GREASE! and DIRT! on the floor and no one is chasing around after them making them sweep up their messes and sighing big sighs because OMIGOD AARON I JUST WASHED THAT WINDOW PLEASE STOP LICKING IT.

All of that and an oil change for the low, low price of $39.99. Wednesday was shaping up to be a pretty easy-going day.

As I was paying for the babysitting oil change, one of the guys came in to the front office and asked me "Is that red Jeep yours?" Certain that he meant "shiny, pristine, what a great job you've done of maintaining it, I've never seen one in better shape" red Jeep, I replied with an enthusiastic "Sure is!" To which he responded "Yah. Well, you've got a a pretty big rats nest up under the hood. Might wanna get some rat poison. Those things like ta eat through wires", calmly shifted his toothpick to the other side of his mouth, patted Aaron on the head and headed back out into the shop.

I briefly contemplated whether or not it might be just as appropriate to light the whole fucking thing on fire and start over with something, oh, I don't know, WITHOUT A RATS NEST IN THE ENGINE? Sadly, we'd never make it home in time for lunch on foot, so I signed the receipt for services rendered and headed for home.

We parked the Jeep at the curb. A short 3-block walk away.

Nap time was spent typing in one variation of "how to get rid of rats in your engine" after another into Google. Nap time was cut short because OH MY HOLY FUCK THERE IS A RAT'S NEST UNDER THE HOOD OF MY CAR, THE VERY CAR THAT WE HAVE BEEN PARKING IN THE GARAGE THAT IS ATTACHED TO MY HOUSE BY A DOOR THAT SEEMS ALTOGETHER VERY INSUFFICIENT CONSIDERING THERE IS A RAT'S NEST UNDER THE HOOD OF MY FUCKING CAR!!! A trip to the car dealership Home Depot suddenly seemed far more pressing than encouraging the boy to have some quiet time.

We perused sprays and powders, baits and traps, and finally came home with a bottle of granules guaranteed to encourage the little critters to rebuild somewhere else. Josh disposed of the nesting material when he got home and then I burnt the gloves he used and made him bathe in bleach before letting him back in the house. We sandbagged liberally sprinkled the perimeter of the house with the granules and sprayed the engine down with gasoline and put a for sale sign on it sprinkled it as well. After a night at the curb to dissuade any little critters from returning to the garage if they insisted upon returning to their former digs, the Jeep was reinstalled on the far side of the garage, as far away from the door to the house as I can possible park it with out taking out the wall in it's rightful place beside Josh's car.

I'm totally okay with having to climb over the console to get out. Sometimes a girl has to be flexible like that.



Amy Jo said...

OMG. I didn't even know that was possible. Having a heart attack right now for you our here in Philly. YIKES!

Anonymous said...

I think you need to read this. I think you are so sincerely lost and I see myself in you a few years ago. Have a blessed day.


susan said...

Dear Anonymous,

Are you suggesting that a belief in god will cure my depression AND solve my rat problem? Wow! Thanks for that tip!

P.S. Where did you get the idea that I don't believe in something beyond myself? Uncloak yourself and let's talk about it.

susan said...

Amy - Apparently the little darlings (shudder) like to build their nests on the warm engine block. Unfortunately, they don't recognize wiring or fans and the resulting dismemberment/frying is so far beyond disgusting that I think I blacked out a little just trying to go there. Still actively debating whether or not it might be time to look at a new car... :)

Lora said...

I love when people get all jesusy up in the blog comments. And they never have enough faith (or something) to leave their real name. Weird, right?

I'm of the mind that a strong belief in something that refuses to show itself (er.. hisself) to me in my greatest times of need is a mental health condition all it's own.

But anyway, on to what I came here for. I love Love LOVE the book "Growing up Again" by Jean Illsley Clarke. Very chock full of nurturing the nurturer stuff. And great parenting tips too.

Curiosity said...

God kills rats? Good to know.

Sorry your day took such a negative turn. It's inevitably always something huge like that that does it too, isn't it? Not "hey, there's a bee outside" but "hey, I think there may be a hive in my underpants."

Laurithia said...


I love you just the way you are, including that part of you that treats you like sh.. I would "fix" her if I could, but I lack experience in that department.

How did I miss the rats under the hood incident. We must not be spending enough time together.