Thursday, January 20, 2011

Last One Up To Bat-part 3

     I lived in my cute, little apartment for one year.  I had been considering purchasing a home at some point but then again, wasn't sure it was for me or what I could afford.  To tell you the truth I liked living in my little apartment.  But my friend across the hall decided she was going to buy a place and her mother was kind enough to enlist a real estate agent to help us both.  I was still apprehensive but it seemed like the right thing to do since I found I that I could afford to own a home for just a little bit more than my rent was costing me.  I ended up buying a 2 bedroom, 2 1/2 bathroom, 2 story townhouse that was the perfect amount of space for a single girl like myself.  It was the only place I looked at; true story. We drove past a few others but I wouldn't even get out of the realtors car because I didn't like the street, etc.  I walked into this townhouse and I thought, well, it doesn't really need any work and it meets all of my needs, so okay.  I wasn't excited and I wasn't upset; I was more like, whatever.  I was scared to death of owning this place and had absolutely no idea how to paint or fix anything.  My bff Brandy, I can recall her saying, "girls aren't supposed to buy houses on their own, they are supposed to get married first and then buy a  house with their husband, or move into his."  I said to her, "well, that's what we've been taught but I'm almost 27, the mortgage is just a little bit more than my rent, they say it's the smart thing to do."  And besides Mr. Right had not come along and I didn't see a need to put my life on hold just because he couldn't hurry up!  I closed and moved in at the beginning of May, 2 weeks before my 27th birthday.  The real estate lady told me, "there will be lots of things you will learn to fix and do"; she said this with a smile.
     So my birthday came around, I was off for the day and had plans to meet up with some friends for dinner at Virago.  That afternoon I painted my nails and fixed my hair and put on my makeup and all that was left was to slip into my dress in a couple of hours and head to dinner.  There had been a drip in the master shower that was bothering me and I had tried a new knob and that didn't work.  I had some time to kill and thought I would run to Lowe's and exchange the knob.  I was also keeping a friend's dog on this day; a very sweet dog that does volunteer work.  I took the dog with me into Lowe's (they will let you do this!) and she sat there in the aisle while I looked over the various fix-it items in the plumbing/bathroom section.  I thought about calling a plumber but the realtor's voice kept talking in the back of my head, "you will learn to do so many things."  A nice older man who worked there helped me quickly diagnose the problem I had and it turned out all I needed was a $4.00 spring that went behind the knob and  into this little hole; he showed me how to fix this on a little model they had.  Simple as that and I thought, "see, I can do this!"  The dog and I went home and I decided to give this a try, after all, it was my birthday, I was 27, a single, independent woman and a home owner!  To make a long story short, I pulled something out behind that knob that I should not have pulled out..............WITHOUT TURNING THE MAIN WATER OFF FIRST!!  THE WATER CAME SPRAYING OUT LIKE A FIRE HYDRANT!!!  The water went all over the place and I couldn't stop it.  I raced around the house opening closets looking for a way to shut this water off and could not find it.  Finally I ran outside and knocked on every neighbors door looking for someone to help. I finally found a young man next door and he reluctantly offered to come over and he walked in and saw the water pouring through the ceiling and just stood there.  Eventually we got the water off and then he left.  I called my dad crying and panicking.  The insurance company sent over some men who tore up my house and left these large industrial dryers everywhere and other equipment.  My birthday dinner was cancelled and we sat in my living room amongst the debris eating pizza instead.

     There is more to that story but I said I would get to the me finally stepping up to the plate to get married in this post so let me keep moving.  After flooding my home I was traumatized.  I was already uncomfortable being a home owner and now I had ruined it.  I couldn't stand the sound of running water unless I was right there watching to see where it went.  I spent several thousands of dollars in home repairs, yes, I had insurance but if you're replacing something you might as well upgrade I say!  I had constant visions of mold that I was just sure was starting to grow as a result of the water (that was never true but that's what I kept imagining).

      The saddest part about all of this is that I was having a really hard time dealing with owning a home before this flood occurred.  I had found myself falling into a depressive state before I started looking for a home and after I found and bought one it didn't get better.  I had been to this place in my mind before and I didn't like feeling like this.  My parents gave me a tore up my new home, I returned it the day before my birthday.  On the morning of my birthday I had actually decided to call a psychiatrist and make an appointment, I felt like I was getting in over my head.  Who would have known later that day I would flood my new home.  I had already admitted that morning that I was down and waving my white flag and then came the flood on top of it all!!!  The psychiatrist gave me an antidepressant but the best prescription she gave me was a therapist.
    I worked with this therapist for probably six months and then I graduated.  I did all sorts of exercises to get over my traumatic experience; she was very good and it worked.  One of the things she had me do that I absolutely hated at first was yoga.  I ended up loving it; it brought a lot of clarity to my mind and a lot of calmness to my soul.  It is something I am hoping to return to because I was a lot better person with it.  On a side note she also had me buy one of those little waterfall things that sits on a table for my house and I would have to lay and listen to the water running while I did these mental exercises that calm the mind.  (which sounds relaxing, unless the sound of running water makes you anxious! it was a very tough exercise for me!)
  These were some things that began to calm me and settle me down from my wild ways.  My friend was living 15 minutes away, rather than 2 feet away, and working at a very busy new job; so gone were the late night chats.  I also was channeling my energy more to focus on me and being a better person.  I guess the flood, the therapy and the yoga kind of mellowed me out.  I did go on a few dates during this time but not like I did before; frankly I didn't have the energy and they bored me.  I decided at that point that I was not going to associate with or participate in anything that didn't bring me up rather than down.  I also borrowed a friend's not-wild dog a lot and went hiking.
     The Fall season came around and I started socializing with different people that were not so wild.  It's a long, complicated story how Jon and I met really so I will try to summarize. Someone we both had in common introduced us briefly and from there Jon called me to ask me out on a date.  I had never really had a conversation with him and frankly I wasn't sure we would hit it off but he seemed nice enough and I had made up my mind about a month or two before that I was going to date cautiously and selectively (and it's amazing how few dates you will have after you set that rule!).  Jon asked me to dinner on a night that I had to pick up one of my best friends, ken, from the airport (he was planning his move to New York:(.  I refused to a dinner date, having to sit down and eat a meal with a man I hadn't really had a conversation with made me too nervous.  Finally I talked him out of dinner and into just having drinks at a place we both knew.  I got there early so that I could go ahead and get a drink and sit down and try to get comfortable.  The place was packed and I can't tell you how many people were giving me crazy looks; there I was, this girl sitting all alone at a table.  Some really drunk guys said, "hey, you're all by yourself, why don't you come and sit with us."  I said, "no thanks, I'm meeting someone."  A minute later one of the guys was so drunk he fell over in his chair......  The place was loud and wild; I was not.  I was beginning to regret getting there early and was quite uncomfortable and nervous waiting on Jon's arrival.  I kept looking back and forth from my phone to the door, looking for Jon.  Finally I saw him walking towards me; I stood up and practically threw myself into his arms (remember, we didn't really know each other, we more or less just knew of each other from our friend).  I exclaimed, "oh my gosh, I am so glad you are here, thank you for saving me!".  Little did I know how much those words really meant.  We sat down and I apologized for nearly knocking him over and everything and he looked around at the crowd and said, "no, I understand, I see what you mean."  I learned so  much about Jon in those first 2 hours.  He had excellent manners, it was obvious he was intelligent and he was funny.  The best part was I guess we were both maybe at a place in our lives where we were ready to be better and be with better people.
     It seemed like there were no questions we shouldn't ask or answer.  I had never experienced this before.  We were able to discover that we both came from nice, loving families; we both had loving siblings that were good people; we both liked dogs; we were both Christians; neither one of us did drugs and we had some of the same hobbies.  I don't know, it is really weird but we just clicked.  All of our core values were the same; all of our goals for the future were the same.  Jon offered to accompany me to the airport to pick up Ken; the smart girl in me was thinking, "i don't know, you don't really know him and you're going to get into a car together...."; the heart in me said, "it's just Jon, what are you afraid of!".  On our drive to the airport we just started making plans; and it wasn't like he said, "I  always go to Easter at my parents house, would you like to come with me this year?"  It was more like we just started meshing our calendars together, JUST LIKE THAT. This first date occurred on November 30, 2007.
  This is Jon on Christmas Day 2007; less than a month after we met.  I had to work that Christmas so I was at home rather than in Alabama with my family. Jon came over that morning to spend some time with me before he went back to his parents house in Hendersonville to celebrate Christmas.


  1. Oh my gosh, I cannot imagine how upsetting that must have been to flood your house! I flooded my bathroom apartment once and that was terrible!!

  2. Wow, I had no idea your first date with Jon was hours before you guys picked me up from the airport! I was there!