When I was younger, and life was simpler, I often gauged how well things were going by the following three criteria: my grades, my weight and money. When I got a real job, I took my grades out of the equation and started worrying about the job, my weight and money. Over the years, as I've picked up a husband, kids, dogs, a mortgage, a second career, a divorce and a house that's trying to kill me, I've often looked back nostalgically at my simple little trio. The fact that I still worry about both my weight and money doesn't escape me, it's just that there's too much else going on to care. As I've gotten older, I've realized that something usually has to give, that it's almost impossible for all the cards to fall your way simultaneously. There's always going to be one area of your life that refuses to play nice. I think it's nature's way of making sure you don't get too full of yourself.
This pattern applies to other areas of my life, too. For example, if I'm looking relatively put together when I leave the house, and am managing to put healthy, home-cooked meals on the table most nights, then it stands to reason that my house will look like a landfill. If the house looks clean and inviting, and I'm still managing to put healthy, home-cooked meals on the table most nights, then I'm guaranteed to look like ass every time I set foot out the door. Look okay, clean house? Frozen pizza for dinner. It never fails. I can keep two balls in the air, but the third one comes straight down and knocks me half unconscious.
Right now, it's my house that's trying to do me in. Partly because of this self-improvement crap I've been doing, I look alright - some of the time, anyway. My weight is okay, I have fingernails and my roots aren't showing. I've just finished week three of my eight week running program, and am amazed at how well it's going - so far. Money is not as bad as it could be. My job is going fine. So obviously, my house is going to be the problem.
The talk with the boys went quite well today. I sat them down and said This Is The Way It Is, and it's really not open for discussion. I did not argue, I did not get angry - I simply said Times are a'changin' and it's time to get with the program. We'll see how it goes, but it was a promising start. With any luck my house will be able to get off of the condemned list sometime soon.
Which kind of worries me. Because then what would be the weak link?