I’m feeling very tired, and the sad part is that I’m pretty sure it's mostly stemming from the fact that we had carpet put in our house today. Don’t get me wrong, I’m really glad it happened, even though I know that in HGTV-land, carpet is basically one of the seven deadly sins of interior design. Say what you will about carpet, but it is a 100% better flooring choice for your family room than cracked ceramic tiles.
(Sidenote: Why do people put tile flooring in their family room? Or, really, why has this just happened to be the case in both of the houses we’ve bought? Tile is so cold, and uncomfortable, and cold. It is for bathrooms and kitchens, period.)
What’s making me tired is that there were two workmen in my house today, and I hate having workmen in my house. (Don’t worry, I’m not a sexist -- this applies to workwomen, too.)
It has nothing to do with bad service; my carpet installers were wonderful. It has everything to do with the fact that they are strangers in my home. They are not only people that I have to be “on” for in a professional sense, but they are in my space, the space I usually go to to recharge after I deal with them in public. This is an introvert’s nightmare, and so it only makes sense that I don’t feel like I can relax until the workers in my house are gone.
Actually, for me the tension starts before the workers even get there. While I’m waiting for them to show up during their allotted window of time (which 98% of the time will be within the last five minutes of it, of course), I hesitate to get too involved in something else in the house, or even use the bathroom, because what if they show up and I can’t get to the door right away? And at this new house, our front and back door both have doorbells that conveniently sound exactly the same, so unless I look out the window, I can’t tell what door they’re ringing from. So, I feel compelled to stay within viewing range. Now, rationally, I know that I really don’t need to get to the door the instant they ring the doorbell. They won’t leave in the ten seconds it takes me to put something down or walk to the other door. But none of this is about rationality, trust me.
Once they’re in the house, I often feel unsure about how close I should stay to the area they’re working on. Should I be there to answer questions, or to make sure everything’s going okay? (Of course, half the time I have no idea if they’re doing it right, but maybe my presence instills a greater sense of accountability or something.) Or can I leave and do whatever I was going to be doing? I’ve gotten better at leaving them to their work, because I’ve learned that they will yell for you if they need you, but I still don’t want to get too involved in something else in case they do. And I really hope they don’t call for me, because half the time I have no idea how to answer their questions, which makes me flustered, and then I have to call Dave and bug him about it. Again, this is really no big deal, but you wouldn’t know that by how anxious it makes me feel.
Luckily for me today, my mom came over to make Christmas cookies while the workers were here. It always feels less awkward when someone else is with you, and the kitchen is right next to the family room, so we could do our thing while still being close by. It was still loud -- apparently putting carpet over tile involves lots of drilling -- but we could mostly have normal conversations. And they didn’t ask me any questions at all!
So really, today was the ideal situation for having workers in the house, yet I still feel tired, and I felt so much more relaxed once they were gone. That is just the way it is right now, rational or not. At least it’s kind of getting easier, and it only happens every once in awhile.
But all the same, I’m glad it’s over. Maybe I’ll go take a nap on my new carpet.