Things got really tough this week. Fights, humiliations, sadness and hurt...the sort of hurt that stays with you when you wake up the next day and forget everything that had happened except that there's a sadness in your heart and then suddenly you remember why.
I don't even want to get into to it, to be honest.
I will just tell you where it started--a showing. We had showings every day, sometimes twice a day. Not a huge deal, except the closer we get to moving out, the harder it was to get packing done. Not just packing, but I couldn't work on any rosary orders and for some reason, I've been getting a lot of custom order requests. Knowing that money will be very tight for the next 20 years or so, I didn't want to turn any away. But all of my time has gone to showings.
Most of my time was spent on cleaning to house that seemed to get messy within 5 minutes with the kids around. Trying to figure out where to hide all the boxes was getting increasingly impossible. I had become so tired and stressed that I was waking up too early every morning--which meant that the little down time I had at naptime was used to take a quick nap, make a very quick rosary if I was lucky or maybe prayer time. Whichever was more important--how down to the wire am I to get a rosary out before the customer complains and leaves a nasty review on my Etsy shop? Or how spiritually weary I am that I just need some prayer time in order to get through all this?
On top of all this, I began getting panic attacks. I haven't had panic attacks since I was a kid. Let me tell you, having panic attacks are bad enough because you are convinced you are having a heart attack and dying. But having an actual heart attack and then dying makes having panic attacks about 30 times scarier. I have had days clinging to Dennis's hand, Luke's hand, Lucy's hand--whoever happens to be there--telling them not to leave because I'm certain for those horrible 5 minutes that I'm dying. And then it passes, and life goes on.
My final straw was on Thursday. We had a 5:00 showing that I was trying to get ready for. I had the house all ready, perfectly clean, and I was waiting for the kids to get home from school. I knew they would want a snack and for once, I didn't want to shoo them outside to eat it. I have been doing this every time we have a showing, making them stay outside forever, because I'm worried about messes. This time I figured I would let eat inside and I would stand guard with a mop and broom for messes.
The kids did really good about eating their crackers carefully. I appreciated how Lucy picked up every crumb she dropped and reminded the kids about their crackers that fell on the floor. They did so good that I gave them all juice (except Max, he has water and he's getting used to it.) I reminded them over and over to please be careful and not spill. I then collected all the dishes and put them in the dishwasher, and swept the floor. Then I turned around and my hand caught on the pitcher of juice on the counter.
It spilled ALL OVER THE FLOOR.
Let me tell you, this was 25 minutes before the showing. I was so mad at myself. Here I was, worried that the kids would make a mess and it was me that made the biggest mess of all.
So I got a towel and wiped up the mess and then sprayed water on the floor. Juice is impossible to clean because if you don't get all of it, it turns into a sticky mess which people walk on and then it's all over the place. And you never know if you got all of it until the floor dries.
In the meantime, Max decided it was would be a good time to color (it wasn't) and he got the paper while Luke got the crayons. The bottom of the box opened and I heard of a crash of crayons go flying everywhere. I looked in the living room and in the hour that it took for me to get it cleaned and vacuumed, the kids managed to mess it up with paper and crayons everywhere in a mere 2 seconds.
Now I was practically having a heart attack. I was so tired of showings, so tired of cleaning, so tired of messes and tired of caring about messes. I don't care about messes. I have kids. It goes with the territory. I hate this side of me that has turned into a high strung cleaning machine.
So I got on the phone, told the receptionist on the phone that after today, NO MORE SHOWINGS until we moved.
I felt instant relief. I knew Dennis would agree with me because he had complaining about showings more than I have. I knew the kids would be happy, because they never get to be home anymore. As soon as the kids get home, we whisk them off in the car to try to find something to do, that won't cost us any money. I knew Max would be happy, since he cannot tolerate the constant unpredictable schedule that goes against the routines in his head. He has had many melt-downs over showings.
It just seemed like the right thing to do, and I knew we would be moving with a few days anyway. You can't do showings with a moving truck in the way, right?
Except that things went horribly wrong. Little did I know that the receptionist misunderstood and canceled the showing for that day--the showing that was literally on their way to our house. We had even left the house and drove by for an hour, wondering when they were going to show up and then angry that we went through all that work just to be stood up.
When I got home, I found a "denied showing" in my email--stating that it was ME who had denied that showing. Then a frantic (and slightly angry) text from my realtor, wanting to know what was going on, why did I cancel a showing 15 minutes before they were coming and why did I cancel for a whole week???
Things only got worse from there, but that's where I'm going to stop. It was not a good day.
Thankfully GOD stepped in, seeing that I was now FINISHED. I was done. I got to the point where I just could do no more, and people were going to have to accept that.
I explained everything to my realtor as nicely as I could but as I said, I was done. Thankfully she understood where I was coming from. She also could see I was about a day away from a nervous breakdown. Sort of kidding here, but at the same time, not kidding.
So she suggested that we take the house "off the market" except it wouldn't really be off the market, it would just be inactive for a while. Buyers could still see it so the interest would be there but they would be informed that there are no showings for a week. Mom agreed, I agreed, and Dennis happily agreed, because he didn't want to do showings while trying to pack around them. The kids cheered when they heard the news.
It's as though a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I can work on rosary orders now, and not worry about having clay lying around. I can make dinner again and not have to worry about rushing us through it so I can clean up before a showing. I have my down time again and I can pack when I want. The kids can come home and relax without being pushed out the door. We don't have to drive around aimlessly, wondering where to go and how we're going to eat without making ourselves broke.
The house is a mess, and I could care less. Life just got TONS better. :-)