Our Living Room Progress

If you had asked me a month ago if I would be sitting at my dining room table, staring at the remains of my living room, I wouldn’t have believed you. Okay, I might have just because I know that just about anything goes in this house, but believe me when I say this was not in my plans. But, here I am. Sitting at my dining room table, staring at the remains of my living room. I know I haven’t shared any updates in a while, so I’m going to jump back a couple of weeks to where this project began.

The little kids were sleeping, Owen was building a Batmobile with Legos, Nate was mowing, and I decided to work some more on getting the living room wall finished. Ever since we moved our stairs into the living room, replaced our windows, and removed the (non-functioning) door, we had drywall to finish and I was having some issues getting the new to match up to the old. The existing drywall was actually a layer of drywall over the top of some type of cement board stuff, so no matter how we tried (and trust me, we tried lots of things over the course of our various drywall projects in this house), we couldn’t get the new to match up to the old. So, we had what I referred to as “the lump” in our wall.

drywall with grey paint and red line

I had a few other non-house related things on my mind on this particular day, and I decided to use some of that frustration as fuel to help me power through this particularly maddening project. That actually happens around here a lot; when I get stressed out or frustrated, I take it out on my home. It’s funny; as I’m typing this, I’m beginning to realize that I’m essentially building my own insane asylum. There’s something therapeutic about tending to my home’s cracks and flaws as I reflect upon my own, I suppose.

Anyway, after hours of work, “the lump” was still there. Taunting me. Reminding me that there are some things that a simple coat (or 9) of drywall mud won’t fix. I was clearly not in a good place by the time Nate finished up his mowing work, because he knew immediately something was up. I told him dramatically that I “just couldn’t” with that wall anymore and I wanted to shiplap the whole damn thing. He calmly told me that I was out of my mind and I either needed to make peace with “the lump” and paint the stupid thing, or we were tearing the whole wall out and replacing all of the old drywall to match up with the new. He might have ended the sentence with something like “if it will finally get you to shut up about it,” or I might have imagined that part. Either way, it was implied.

Again, in a dramatic flair, I shouted something to the effect that I could not and would not ever make peace with “the lump” and that if he wasn’t going to let me cover it with shiplap, we were going to tear the whole thing down. Again, let me remind you, I’m pretty sure there might’ve been some underlying emotional turmoil happening here that was not directly house-related… That being said, I do tend to take my wall texture very seriously (I’ve had more than one heated argument with my dad over the merits of smooth vs textured walls that ended in raised voices).

It wasn’t until we were on our drive home from Menards that I realized I may have overreacted slightly, and maybe blowing up my entire living room wasn’t going to solve all of my problems… but I had already made a pretty bold statement about “the lump.” Besides, the drywall, insulation, mud, and new outlet boxes (a bonus- we decided we were going to add some more outlets to that wall while we had the drywall down) were already purchased, so I knew I needed to keep my mouth shut.

The moral of the story? Maybe I shouldn’t take my emotions out on my home. It’s been about two weeks now without a living room, and there isn’t much I wouldn’t do to curl up on my couch and watch tv after the kids go to bed, or to sit on my couch and drink my coffee in the morning, or to listen to Dex snore peacefully on his corner of the couch (maybe I just miss my couch?). However, this has forced us to take action and to keep taking action to finish this room up. As I’m typing this right now, the walls are down, the wiring is almost done, and more than half of the ceiling has a coat of mud on it. None of this would have happened had we not taken BIG action and declared our living room a disaster zone, not to be put back together until the project is finished.