Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Dignity and Grace

There have been moments in my life when I have handled events with both dignity and grace...Today was not one of those days.

Let me set the scene for you.

It all started at 6:12am when I woke up to an email that I had received my consulate appointment in China as well as my "gottcha day" date. This was followed by much texting and quiet celebrating since I didn't want to wake the rest of the house.  And then to work where many a celebratory woohoo and hug occurred.  Students were on a 2 hour delay due to the extreme cold (12 degrees Georgia...this is not ok). Someone brought me Starbucks (thanks Hallie), many kids were absent, and it was a generally pleasant day.

Fast forward to 2:55 when my dad calls and says that I may want to stop by the house because they just had pipes burst at the church and my sister mentioned a frozen pipe this morning.  So I stroll to my room, grab my things and drive home.  

What I walked into was nearly indescribable.  Water was pouring out of the attic with such force that I could have easily shampooed and fully rinsed my hair under it.  The carpets were so wet they had turned an entire different color and the water in the kitchen was at least an inch and a half deep. My poor tiny dogs were soaking wet (what with being trapped in a flooded and freezing kitchen and all).  I found myself incapable of rational thought so I did what I always do in times like these.

I called my daddy.

No answer

I called again

No answer

I call the church where I blurt out "it's Jesse, is my dad there my house is flooded and I don't know what to do"

Luckily the secretary answered and got my dad who told me to turn off the water at the street and that he would be there ASAP.

I go to the street and wander back and for for a moment because I realize I have absolutely no clue what I'm looking for.

I call one of the teachers I work with but he had already left school.

My dad calls back and describes the water access panel and has the forthought to tell me to get some plyers.  I managed to get the metal plate up and plunged my hand into a hole full of icy water to try and find the knob....no luck

My dad calls again and suggests I call my cousin (who's new husband has a company with a plumbing department).  I make the call again and poor Liza tells me to turn off the water.  I'm sure my reply was something like "BUT I DONT KNOW HOW AND MY DAD ISNT HERE AND I NEED WILLIAM TO HELP ME". (This is where both dignity and grace start to leave me in droves) Liza calmly assures me that she will call William and I hang up.

And then I dropped my phone in the hole of icy water.



From there things pretty much spiraled. I got the phone. But I couldn't remove the case on account of my frozen hands and the massive amounts of adrenaline that are by now coursing through my body.  Then I can't remember re which way to turn the valve (lefty loosey.....but do I want to loosen or tighten....ahhh).  Plus it was really hard to turn, but I did manage it right as my dad pulled up.  

And he found the leak.

And I cried a lot

And friends came over for moral support and to wet vac

And I cried a lot

And William called (bless him when he asked if I had called my home owners insurance ppl I replied "no William I've mostly just been crying").

And then I cried some more

But we got rid of a lot of water....but there is still a ton (the carpets still make a squishy noise when you walk on them)

And the only loss of property was a puzzle (sorry Aunt Barbara I owe you one).

Tomorrow begins the repairs and finding out what all needs to be replaced.

Silver lining I will hopefully be in China for most of the repair work.

And I'm thankful for my family and friends who, even when I lose my dignity and grace, still love me and can still make me laugh (yes I know if spent 16 hours shampooing the carpets last week friends, the irony isn't lost on me.)

It's been quite a day but I keep reminding myself that I will have Jonah in my arms in 13 days and that makes the massive flood seem not all that bad!

                     (My kitchen floor is not that shiny....that's water people)