Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Snapshot: then and now

So some of you may remember that I mentioned once a long time ago that we had a hole in our carport ceiling from when the tall boy fell through it.  Here's how it happened:

The young tall boy (he was twelve) was fetching camping gear from the carport attic, in preparation for a Boy Scout adventure, when he stepped in the wrong place.  He crashed through the drywall ceiling of the carport, bounced off the top of the minivan, and landed flat on his back on the cement floor, right next to the trash dumpster.  Inside the house, the husband and I heard the crash, and seriously -- one of us said to the other, "Huh.  I wonder what that noise was."  Then we both picked up our coffee mugs and went back to whatever we were reading. 

And people, I swear that's exactly what happened.  When you think I'm exaggerating, or making something up for comic effect -- that is when I am telling the precise truth.  The stuff I make up cannot hold a candle to the shit that really happens to me.

Well -- after a spit take as we both realized that our beloved child was in the carport attic -- and the noise had come from the carport attic! -- we put down our coffee and strolled outside to see what all the racket was about.

Actually, I did make that part up.  Once we realized that the noise and our boy were probably connected, we did bolt out the door pretty quickly.  We're morons, but caring morons.

There was the tall boy, splayed like Wile E. Coyote after he chased the Roadrunner off a cliff.  The husband said, "Can you move, buddy?"  And the tall boy said, "Uh, no . . . ."

Insert all your own worst nightmares here.  They will be an accurate representation of the thoughts that ran through my head in slow motion.

While I was imagining my new life as the parent of a paralyzed child, and looking around for a discreet place to throw up, the husband responded to the horizontal tall boy:  "Listen.  Is it that you can't move, or that you're afraid to move?"  And the tall boy shot his father a pitying look.  "Dad.  I just got the First Aid merit badge.  You're not supposed to move a back injury."  And the world bounced back into place.

After determining that our boy could in fact move his fingers and toes, his arms and his legs, the husband got him up off the ground and dusted him off.  "What do you say we head on over to the hospital and see if you're brain-damaged?"

The tall boy laughed dismissively.  "No way, Dad!  We're going camping!"

And that was the end of that.

* * *

Well, so the hole in the carport ceiling was huge, and needed repairing in the worst way.  But somehow we never quite got around to it.  I have joked that we are lazy, and it is true -- but we're not that lazy.  In the ten years since the hole appeared, we have painted almost every room in our home, replaced flooring, renovated our kitchen, built a lovely fireplace mantel, gutted, designed, and restored one whole floor of our house, replaced a deck, and put up a split rail fence.  Some of these chores were accomplished by hiring professionals, but many of them were done by us, our own lazy selves.

And yet the hole in the carport ceiling lingered.  Why?  What was the weird dysfunctional thing going on that would not allow us to get rid of this unsightly and dangerous and embarrassing open wound?

I have no answer.

But it's gone now!  Our long national regional local pathetic nightmare is over!

And somebody needs to slap me, because I did actually say out loud to the husband, "You know, if we wait just a little longer, we can have a tenth anniversary party for the hole . . . "


  1. We totally would have (non)reacted in the same way.

  2. Congratulations on getting that fixed. We currently have 3 holes in our living room ceiling due to plumbing problems. I sure hope it doesn't take that long to get those holes done over!