Friday, June 3, 2011

For Tonight

Tonight my feet are propped on the wall and my back is wedged against my mattress and box springs.  The mattress is naked, stripped of bedding, and the box springs are on the floor.  There is not much else in the room besides the lonely internet modem.  And that's okay, because tonight that's about all I need.

I had a melt down earlier this evening.  It's been a crazy week, and it finally all got to me.  Moving makes me a little crazy, even if it's a short move from one apartment to another.  I've been doing this move piecemeal, doing what I can by myself, because heaven forbid that I should ask for help.  Actually, I haven't even had to ask, people have been great about offering.  Unfortunately, I'm not organized enough to take them up on their offer, except for the big stuff.  One person who had said he could help with the big stuff helped me get everything but the mattress.  We were going to get the mattress, but ran out of time.  Now I'm not sure he can help finish up, so I have to make other arrangements for that.

So that's one little thing.  Another little thing is that my internet service can't get switched until Tuesday, so I kept my modem in the old apartment, figuring I might use it while I'm trying to take care of cleaning.

One big thing is that I'm not sure that I can live in my new apartment.  It reeks of cigarette smoke.  I have a sensitivity to cigarette smoke, so not only do I not like the smell, but it gives me a headache and makes me nauseated.  (Is that really a sensitivity, or is that how most people feel?)  Air filters, febreeze, and scented plug ins don't seem to be helping much.  I really don't know what's going to happen. I just talked to management, but I don't think they really understood how much of a problem it is (I didn't either, when I told them, because I hadn't tried to spend much time there).  They put in a service request, but how will that help?  I can't figure out the source, and I cannot fathom how they can fix it.

All day today I've been exhausted.  Besides moving making me tired, last night I took a break from moving... and went rock climbing.  Yeah, because that really helped me rest and get ready for the final moving push (okay, while not restful, it was really fun).  Anyway, when I got home tonight, too tired to do anything, I was greeted by the overwhelming smell of the smoke.  That immediately depressed me, because all I can think about is that I'm going to have to move again because there's no possible way I can live here for 12 months, and how am I going to get all this stuff moved again, and why, oh, why do I have to be alone and deal with all this stuff by myself.  And that's when the melt down happened.  All I could think about was how the heck was I going to make it through the night with the bad air, and feeling totally cut off from the outside world with no internet connection.

I have to admit that I didn't pray about the situation. I didn't really want to.  God has felt so far away for months now, and He certainly wasn't close tonight.  I mean, I get that He's not some fairy godmother that's going to wave a magic wand and make everything hunky dory.  There are far too many people suffering for me to believe that I should have my way paved smooth.  But seriously, let it all fall apart and then stand at a distance?

But then there was a whisper.  A whisper that I would have really preferred to ignore, because I was too busy pouting at the One who whispered.  No, I don't hear voices.  It was more the realization that because my bed didn't get moved, I had a bed waiting for me at another apartment, an apartment that didn't give me a headache.  A whisper that not only was there a bed, but also a magical internet connection, and therefore a connection with the outside world.

And at that, I immediately jumped up and felt better about everything and thanked God for His blessings...

Okay, not really.  My first response to that thought was, "So? I still don't have a place to live after Monday besides the one that makes me sick, and I'm still alone dealing with this problem, when I'd rather be married, living in a house rather than renting an apartment that costs way to much for what I'm getting.  How on earth will it help me to just leave for tonight?"

Ah, belligerence. But God doesn't really argue back.  He didn't really respond at all.  He just waited.  Waited for me to realize that while it didn't fix everything, it was enough for tonight.  Waited for me to realize that I could thank Him for His provision tonight and trust Him to take care of tomorrow when it needed to be taken care of... Tomorrow.

And so it is that I sit in a room with a bare mattress (I brought a sleeping bag and a pillow) and a modem (and of course my computer) and it is enough.  The air smells wonderfully of nothing, and the time spent with emails and blogs made me feel not so alone and helped me to remember that there are others that I can pray for and offer my small problems for.  And I can ask you for prayers, and be thankful that we're not alone, even if our stories are not quite the same and we may feel alone sometimes.

And now, good night.  I am going to bed and I am going to sleep until I can't sleep anymore.  Then I can get up and deal with the rest.


  1. The lady who had lived in our house was a smoker, and the house hadn't been painted or updated in years and years. The nicotine stains on the walls and ceilings were absolutely disgusting. After about 3 coats of Kilz and 3 coats of paint, things were better. (We pulled up all of the carpet in the house before we moved in.) When I went to paint the doors, I cleaned them and sanded them, and was amazed at how much nicotine was on there. And that was after cleaning them several times.
    Wish I could be there for you to help clean and paint, but maybe the management will do that? And change out the carpet? (I can hear you laughing clear across the USA!) Might be worth it to request, anyway!

  2. Actually, it's fresh carpet and paint (I got up close with both to check for sure). So I'm trying to figure out where this is coming from. It's making me think I'm crazy! :) Luckily, it was really bad when someone was helping me move a few things in, so I know I'm not just making it up. I'm thinking it has to be getting in from the neighbors somehow, but I don't know how.

  3. So glad you found peace last night. Oh, and how it never fails that when I want to pout and stomp my feet, His whisper comes.

    Count me in among those praying for you.

  4. And this is life. And you are living it well.

    I do think there is such a thing as sensitivity to smoke. I know that in our last apartment people would sometimes stand outside and smoke beside our AC vent thing (I don't know exactly how it worked, all I now is that it would suddenly feel like I was standing right next to someone smoking and the apartment would stink horribly for hours. Anyway, it bothered Josh, but not nearly as much as it bothered me. I don't think that I got headaches from it, but I would want to vomit.

    I hope that you find a better place to live. I am hunting now and it just stinks.

  5. When we stayed in a smoking room in a hotel for 2 weeks (all the non smoking rooms were taken) it was helpful to wipe things down and keep the windows open as much as possible. I hope management is able to do something about it, it really is their fault for renting to someone who was smoking inside in the first place.

  6. Oye Vey! I have had my share of apartment problems. The smoke smell is probably a neighbor who smokes indoors. Perhaps the management can assign you another apartment in the building? One property management company did that for me in my first apartment thanks to my stereo blasting neighbor. Know of my prayers, M...who knows? Maybe Mr. Future Husband is a lawyer who will solve this dispute! ;) It's really all a blessing leading you toward God's will... I'm praying!!