Family – the Latin word for People you can complain to while eating all of their food and walking around in your underpants. As of late, I have been spending mucho time-o with family. Ninety-nine percent of it has been awesome. My wonderful sister came into town with my niece and nephew, my mom has been working over-time to make a comfortable place for all of the grandchildren to destroy, and my in-laws have opened up their home to my little family unit so we don’t have to live at a La Quinta while we renovate our house. All good stuff.
Here’s what I know: I cannot live with family. I am far too anal and I am weird about my stuff. Seriously, I’m like Psycho/Francis Soyer in Stripes, keep your hands off my stuff (minus the sexual orientation slur).
More than the material items, it’s everyone’s living idiosyncrasies that get to me. These usually end up rubbing against one another after a couple of days – like sandpaper.
My mother-in-law calls it the fish effect – after a couple of days house guests and fish start to stink. The woman could not be more correct.
Since we are house guests, we are the stinky sea bass in this scenario.
As always, allow me illustrate:
Prior to embarking on their Thelma and Louise cross the country two month extravaganza, we co-habitated with my in-laws. We looked like the cast of Gilligan’s Island: the artist, the PhD, the techie, a really loud small person, a slightly OCD writer, and two dogs. We all thought it would only be a three hour tour, but it was much longer.
The artist needs his space – a lot of it. I’m pretty sure the Guggenheim museum in Spain could not hold all of his wares. His stuff materializes like Sea Monkeys: one minute, it’s not there, then poof! Your fishbowl is crowded.
The little person’s voice is extremely amplified in a home with stone floors. When one of the dogs chewed up her beloved toy, she screamed so loudly she woke the dead from the Civil War.
The techie has not been able to fully unwind with his belongings. His video game playing and channel surfing has massively diminished. This has caused him to come to bed early and sigh in my ear while I try to read.
Excelling in organizational skills (read: uptight), I have been scurrying around picking up things, washing them, and putting them away. This is what I do when I get antsy. I am sure everyone feels relaxed listening to me curse at my daughter’s toy cubbies because not all of her Calico Critters will fit. This emotional strain uses tuckers me out, forcing me to drink some red wine and fall asleep on the couch with my mouth open.
Even the dogs have been arguing. Namely due to the fact that our girl is getting old and going through “doggy-pause.” She pants a lot, drinks gallons of water, has gained her middle age spread, and has no time for B.S.
The PhD is about the only one keeping it together. Maybe it’s because she got her nails done and a facial. She has the right idea.
While grating on each other’s nerves at times, these are pretty silly things which create ample material for a free blog. But as the saying goes, at least we have family, so I consider us pretty lucky.
Needless to say, I look forward to the day when I am in my own space again, and relaxed. So when I move into my new home you are all invited to come over for dinner.
But not until 2015. Because seriously, I don’t want to see anybody until then.