Holy crap - where do I even begin?
Jason and I have been knee-deep in a home renovation over the last 3 1/2 months.
It's been challenging, exciting and exhausting all at the same time, but very recently has brought us to a very difficult place. We met our contractors through some friends of ours who had used them for a build-out of their own attic space on an old historic home, so we knew we were putting ourselves in good hands. And at the beginning we had to jump through some difficult hoops of meeting the codes of the Metro Historical Zoning Commission here in Nashville. Well, we thought we were long past having to ever deal with them again...but no, they've come back to haunt us yet one more time. Our contractors had mistakenly overlooked a very crucial code requirement through the framing process and a couple weeks ago one of the Historic Commission staff members reported our home as breaking their codes. Our contractors have been meeting with them and trying to figure out a compromise, but they have stuck to their guns and refuse to budge on their requirements. So what does all of this mean to use? Well, we're literally 2 weeks away from completion - the drywall is finished, the trim up, the tile laid, the electric & plumbing installed and 80 % of the painting completed. The only thing really left to do was installing the hardwood floors. And now, we're being required to literally demo the side walls of the renovation space and build in 2 feet on either side of the home, so that the new construction is noticeably separate from the original home. It's sickening when I think about it. My anxiety has been through the roof and I am at a loss for words of how to pray. Of course my solid-as-a-rock husband is steady through it all - even when I was cussing and ready to throw the contractors out of my house. They know it's their fault and they of course will eat the cost of demoing and reconstructing the walls. I just thought I was so close to putting this process behind us - putting the dust, the mess, the fumes, the stress, the running to the laundromat every week with 9 loads of laundry in 90 degree heat, the anxiety and consequently seizures Jeep has been having....and now we're in essence starting over in many ways.
I'm not conceding however without a fight. I've met with a couple attorneys that I work with who specialize in construction law and one of them happens to know a few of the Board Commissioners of the Metro Historical Commission. I'm hoping he is able to persuade them to allow Jason and I the opportunity to appeal our situation, so they will issue us a variance. I'm literally flabbergasted how the Commission could choose to penalize a couple who have only put money, blood, sweat & tears into improving the East Nashville community. How is it that I have neighbors down the street from us who literally let their homes rot to the bones, many eventually becoming condemned and yet we try to preserve the beauty and integrity of our historic home and end up being slapped on the wrist for the way we go about it? I mean really people, 2 feet?
I have yet to say anything on Facebook about the grief this has all been causing me, because in one way I feel guilty for allowing something like this to even get to me - yes, its super frustrating - but I have many friends who look at our situation and only see what a blessing it is that we are in a place to even do a remodel such as this in the first place. It's true and I know it is, that God has been faithful to us. I just so struggle with being discouraged by continual "bad news". I have a terrible habit at comparing the struggles that Jason and I go through to the ease that others seem to achieve in their own lives. I want so badly to be content in where God has us - with our home, our fertility, our family, our careers and our lives. He is good and His love never waivers. I just need to blog more often so I can remind myself of that more often. The last 2 days I've emptied and exhausted myself being angry, frustrated, anxious and stressed out. The amazing thing about grace - is that today I can start anew, ask forgiveness and begin trusting again.
So some positive things to end this post on....I've lost 10 pounds and am excited to finally be losing some weight and look forward to the next 10 pounds I plan to lose! I was able to head back to Seattle for a quick visit to see my family and spend the first Father's Day with my dad since I left for Nashville. It was gorgeous weather and I had a great time.
I'm gonna get back into this blogging thing - I think it's good for my sanity ;-)