Then there was that time that we evacuated our house in the middle of winter because of a mold problem.
We knew we had mold in the downstairs bathroom, especially since a particular 4 year old left the tap running two years ago and flooded the aged carpet in there. The real problem was not realizing what a health concern mold can be. We were planning on remodeling that bathroom, but it just wasn’t in the budget yet. So, ignorant of how toxic mold spores can be, we continued to use it.
And fought chronic sinus infections all last winter, and all this year, except for when we were gone to Alabama. You’d think we’d put two and two together. Finally, two weekends ago, I did an internet search and educated myself on the dangers of breathing mold. Um, yeah. Not so good. And probably the reason for our colds, weird rashes, insomnia, and general failure to thrive, despite a nourishing diet and no known allergies.
Thankfully, a family member’s house stood vacant this winter, ready for us to move in to temporarily.
Thankfully, my husband has construction experience, and will be able remediate the mold himself.
Thankfully, when he started working on it, he found that the 7 layers of flooring and 3 layers on the wall in that old bathroom had protected the actual structure of the bathroom from too much mold.
Thankfully, the house we’re staying in has a dishwasher, so this little interruption has been like a tiny vacation in that regard.
I’m not trying to sugar cote this. It’s not been fun. Learning my dear little house was the reason we’d fought illness for two years was deeply disturbing to my homemaker’s heart. Packing to evacuate is not nearly as fun as packing for one of our frequent road trips. Coping with all of this while feeling like I have a case of mono (common symptom of mold toxicity) has been a challenge. But two key things that helped me get back on track after getting derailed by circumstances beyond my control…
How to Fight a Slump
1. Count your blessings. Clichéd, but wonderfully effective. I started a list of things to be grateful for when we got here. It helped me keep my focus on lovely things. The fact that the stove here has a light above it—I can see what I’m cooking! The many windows in this house, letting the rare bits of sunshine in to brighten my day. Being within walking distance of the library (and a thrift store!). Everyone’s colds clearing up for the first time since early December–Hooray!
2. Embrace Beauty. When I was in the deepest moments of my pity party, a faithful friend gave me a much-needed kick in the pants. Told me to buck up and start embracing beauty where I was at (ironically, the whole theme of the book I’m in the middle of writing). I started a beauty campaign by turning that week’s produce purchases into a centerpiece for the table, and things began to look up from there. Later that week I made a trip to the thrift store. More than just retail therapy, this was a conscious decision to find and embrace beauty in my week, and my efforts were rewarded with $15 of treasures that gave my wardrobe a complete make over. (Woot!) Yes, I believe He invented beauty to give us joy.
So, that’s my explanation for my general scarcity online lately. The house we’re staying in doesn’t have internet, and as of this week, I’ve used up most of the data on my phone waaaaaaaaaaaaaay before the end of my billing month. Please pardon any delay in responding to emails or comments–I only have internet when I walk to the library. Also, we’d appreciate your prayers as we detox and heal from the mold exposure, try to retain some normality for our kids in the midst of all this discombobulation, and work to clean up our home.
Blessings, and I miss you all! –Trina