Monday, January 30, 2012

Sanding off the Veneer

If you've been following the blog, you know we're in the middle of a lot of projects around the homestead right now.  The Mr took the banister off of the wall because it needed to be painted.  We set it out in the garage and I got to sanding.  I welcomed the break from all of the paint fumes to go into sucking in fine polyurethane particles.

I don't know the the whole vibration of the sander or the alone time with the white noise of it got me all zen or what but I actually got a little sad.  This is our first house.  You know, the place we were going to stay for 5 years and then move on?  Well, it's been almost 16 years and living beneath our means has allowed us to live a good life especially since its just the two of us.  I thought of all that banister had seen.  I thought of the 21 and 23 year old us doing their final walk through and grabbing the newly painted banister as we headed upstairs to inspect the rest of the house; excited that it would be done 2 weeks prior to our wedding.  I thought of holding onto it my first night in our new home in exhaustion from a wonderful wedding day after having eaten groom's cake and counting our money until 2am when we had a flight to catch to Hawaii in 6 hours.  I thought of the people it had hosted from friends to family both here and gone to repairmen to a little black and white short-haired pooch that was the light of our lives who might've walked under it quite a bit as she'd peer through the open back stairs but was never tall enough to reach it.  I thought of what a bitch it was the paint behind when we were too stupid to remove it the last time we painted.  I thought of all of these things as I tearfully sanded away the times that were now etched into this piece of wood...times that were now in a pile of dust on my garage floor.  I kind of felt like I should save the dust to hold on to those things.  But I was proud of what was revealed.  A beautiful, fresh piece of wood.

As I began sanding off the veneer of the banister that had seen it's better days, I also couldn't help but think of how it related to this whole weight loss thing.  You have this strong, sturdy foundation that gets taken for granted and one day you look at it a go "hmm, that's seen its better days."  You either choose to let it get worse and degrade, get a whole new body and throw away the old one by whatever means necessary or you do what you should've done all along...sand away the veneer to reveal the beautiful clean slate waiting for all of us.

I think I just threw up in my mouth a little.  I guess a 5 pound loss will do that to a person.

I hope you're all ready to do a little "sanding"...what's your plan to kick things into gear this week?

Don't miss another post! Subscribe via email or RSS feed.


  1. No need to throw up, I thought that was very insightful. Insight comes at the most mundane times!

  2. I moved a lot as a kid, and when it was time to leave each house, I always cried because there were so many memories. I can completely relate to the banister story.

    The one reason that I love doing home improvement projects is that I always fall into that zen place.

    Here's some more throw up: You're like a caterpillar that's shedding it's thick cocoon and reentering the world as a light and ligthe butterfly.

  3. This is an amazing post and one I will cherish. You captured the spirit of our home so well and all the wonderful things that have happened in our home as well as the family (pets included) and friends who've passed through. I know how you feel about the dust but thanks to your honorable post they are forever etched in our minds and don't have to linger in that banister anymore. It will be hard to leave our home when the time comes but we will take all of those wonderful memories with us and make new ones as well so it will all be worthwhile.

  4. wow, I enjoyed this post very much! I don't think I could ever sell my house, too many memories, too much history. Enjoy your week!

  5. The thing I told my mom when we helped her move into her new house after 40 some years in the old one is that the important things move with you--including the memories from the old house. Great post.

  6. I like your analogy. But then I've always been into the schmaltzy stuff. I have always thought of the weight loss thing as the weight melting off, revealing this beautiful person underneath. But sanding it away is probably closer to what happens, because sanding takes a lot of elbow grease and work, and that's what weight loss takes too, it doesn't just "melt" away!
    The Mr. expressed his sentiments beautifully, you both seem to have a way with words!

  7. Beautiful words... beautiful woman!

    ...I'm keepin' steady on!

    {{{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}

  8. Great analogy! It also highlights that just because something is older and has a few scars doesn't mean it's not beautiful and worthwhile.

  9. I tend to wax philosophic when I'm overcome by paint fumes and polyurethane particles, too (just kidding, of course). Seriously, though, it's a great analogy; we can choose to let things continue to deteriorate or put in the hard work of stripping things down for a clean start. Part of the process of making room for the new has to be stripping away the old. It doesn't mean we have to dump all the memories, though; those we can take with us forever.

  10. This is a fine analogy! I think weight loss can be related to soooo many areas in our lives!

  11. As I'm reading it I'm sitting there thinking "awwww, that's so sweet...great analogy...ooh nice work tying it in there", but wait - this doesn't sound like the Mrs. What's going on here?!? And then the final comment - A-HA! There she is!!!!!

    Loved this post - such true words!

    This weekend I sanded off the veneer on all of my toes and I think I even left a little chunk of my knee out there on the road. ;-) Had a great time at The Tinkerbell...and it was a lot of sanding let me tell ya! But I like what I found underneath. A STRONG Warrior! :-)

  12. You really are a great writer! My sanding this week will be to make sure to hit my calorie burn mark!

  13. Despite kind of taking it back at the end :) actually are a talented writer, and you conveyed the emotion really beautifully. I suppose making a place for new things to develop and grow is not always a bad thing.

  14. What an awesome story. Your lives are so different from ours and so foreign to our experiences. I just love hearing your day to day joys and challenges and your remarkable history. Thank you for sharing such a tender moment with us. *hugs*


Thanks for taking the time to comment! I appreciate your time! (Heads up though...disrespectful or spam comments will be deleted.)