Monday, September 19, 2011

My grade 7 journal: "My favourite class is shop."

There is nothing like getting down and dirty with some power tools.  I literally hear my adolescent self rejoice.  I spent a few weeks this summer stripping the baseboards and refinishing the oak wood floor in the smallest room of my circa 1930 Toronto house.

And now, each and everytime I walk by the room with the 'new floor' I feel such pride in my accomplishment I expect the goddess herself to smite me for indulging so regularly in one of the seven deadlies.

But,what you don't see in the above photo collage is the sweat.  In Toronto, in August, there was quite a bit of it poured onto the floorboards.  And the tears.  

The tears came as proficiently as the sweat some days.

Tears for a life not lived.  Tears for a body caged by a disease that forbids a full time switch to physical labour of any kind.  Tears for lovers lost.  Childhood endings.  Misguided choices.  Abandoned and neglected friendships.

When rubbing in the oil on the floor after nearly 3 weeks of developing a very intimate relationship with it I felt I was anointing it, for in a peculiar way, the old floor has become my sacrificial lamb.  An offering to the universe of myself.  Stripped raw and then polished and buffed.  

So take me as I am universe.  I am ready, willing, and able for service.


  1. Who knew such labour could/would invoke such deep thought and reflection? Very well said! Though I can't help but feel a tinge of sadness and I really hope that you found hope at the end of your tears. That you find forgiveness and can look forward. That you find a new beginning, much like your fabulous floor. That the road ahead won't be lined with regrets. Keep smiling (even through the tears some days, right?)

    Thanks for this Orla. I hope today is a great day for you!

  2. This looks even more amazing than how you described it. Well done, seriously.

  3. HazelP: Thank-you for your kind words. It's merely middle aged angst ramped up by the lightening speed approach of the ending of daughter's childhood. Nothing that old age can't cure LOL

    alexandrakp: Aw shucks. And thanks too :)


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