Thursday, February 21, 2019

The Law of Attraction in my own life

I used to complain about being alone too much. Being isolated from a social community. I worried about the deferred maintenance on the house. I was frantic at being left alone with TONS of hand shoveling to do. I cried over frozen fingers and toes while doing chores outside. I lamented that my marriage seemed to be disintegrating before my very eyes. I obsessed about money and not having enough of it. I fretted about the loss of  stability in my life; about financial security. I believed I clung to my limited world for the sake of my dogs. I knew and appreciated that I was luckier than a lot of women my age. My pets and I were all warm, fed, and safe. What did I really have to complain about?

The Law of Attraction always gives you more of what you complain about!

For the past few years since my folks sold their lake home and have since died, I’ve been dreaming and talking about the North Woods. Asking the Universe to help me find a way. I joined a women’s Bigfoot Research team which took me to the woods. Being informed that my husband wanted a divorce forced my hand. I had to play it. My husband is now my ex-husband and that catapulted me right into the woods!

Ironically, what I’d been saying I had too much of and didn’t want in the first place was what I actually got a lot more of.

The big one is Isolation. This is definitely a remote location.  Extremely limited social life. My previous social milieu was left behind in Minneapolis! Lots of deferred maintenance to deal with on my “new” house, not to mention the surprise challenges of which I have already posted. I have to shovel massive amounts of snow not only on the ground, but on the roof too. The cold here is way more extreme than what I experienced 200 miles to the south. Money looms as a serious problem because the alimony expires in six years just before my 70th birthday. What little I did have was taxed heavily. I resent this deeply when I see big corporations reaping billions and paying nothing.

I lost my tenuous security with the loss of my marriage. I lost the relative convenience of the property that had been re-designed to accommodate our lives, especially my many dogs.

So, it seems that you do indeed get more of what you focus on. The Universe really doesn’t seem to differentiate between what is desired and what is not desired. Thankfully, I also focused on things that brought me what I did want as well as what I didn’t want.  I got my house in the North Woods where I can have all my dogs. That was my main goal, and I accomplished that.

But I’m not sure I’ve really learned my lesson. I want to avoid repeating my misery patterns until I finally “get it”. I do know now that the Law of Attraction is real. I’m attempting to be more conscious of what I am thinking about and trying to direct my thoughts away from what I don’t want to what I do want. The corollary to the Law of Attraction is that What You Resist Persists. What you refuse to acknowledge will just keep biting you in the butt until you do.

I  think that we are here to experience not just what we deem “good” or “pleasant” but to experience the whole continuum. I also don’t believe that ignoring reality will change it. Wanting a broken arm to be unbroken will not fix it once it’s broken; you need to have it set and let it heal. You need to act, not just wish. 

How do I acknowledge the tragedies, the injustices, and suffering, the destruction, the greed, the evil everywhere around me without being sucked into rage, despair, apathy, or immobility? It isn't productive to simply focus all my attention on resisting what I don't want--I've seen first hand that I will just get more of it. What seems more beneficial is to focus on replacing what I don't want with something I do want. But I have to acknowledge the broken part and take action to heal it as well. I have to feel the pain of the break, and accept the suffering in order to move on.

Finding a balance is not easy. It’s often not clear to me how to redirect my focus, or even if I should. I find myself feeling guilty for not focusing on the negative. It’s not easy recognizing what I can change versus what I can’t change. I don’t feel particularly wise on that account. I often feel barraged by information and misinformation to the point of confusion which suspends me in a vacuum of doubt and sadness. 

What redeems my often dismal state is my connection to a very few important people in my life, my pets, and being surrounded by the woods that I’ve loved and longed for all my life. I can sometimes actually believe that it's OK to let go of my despair with the way the world is. I can sometimes give myself permission to simply accept it as it is, which doesn’t mean I have to like it, or condone it. But I personally don’t have to change it “out there”.

It’s enough that I change it “in here”.  My own evolution will attract more of what I want, but also to replace, not resist that which I do not want. Afterall, I am an integral part of the world "out there" too.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Just One Dam(n) Thing After Another

It’s just one dam(n) thing after another around here! Four days ago I noticed a wet spot on the ceiling on the office side of the archway that separates my office from the living room. That wet spot started to drip. I noticed that the other end of the arch way was also dripping. The paint was bubbling half way down the archway announcing the arrival of water. I called my BFF Nikki in a panic and she talked me down a bit. Her advice was to punch a hole in the ceiling with a nail to give the water a place to drain and go outside and rake as much snow off the roof as I could in the area of the ice dam causing the invasion.

I had already removed snow several times, to little or no avail. The ice dams cometh.

There was another ice dam on the opposite side of the house which I could see had infiltrated in some earlier epoch. The evidence was pretty clear. Someone had tried to patch the corner in the dining room, but it had lifted off with the damp. Luckily, the water from this ice dam had a habit of running down into the basement. Sure enough, the cinder block wall was streaked with water. Luckily, there is a floor drain nearby which any excess water might go if necessary.

For two days I was subjected to the incessant drip drip drip of my accidental water feature. Buckets with rags inside to muffle the echoing madness finally became a background noise that I soon was able to pretty much ignore.

As the water became more persistent, I enlarged the hole and dug way some of the lifting paint and drywall revealing wood and metal.

Then, suddenly, it stopped. The ice dams are still there, and the guys that are supposed to come over to remove the snow from my roof have not appeared as of yet. No one is answering my texts. A quick drive around “town” made the reason clear to me. I am not alone! There are plenty of others with more urgent problems. Bigger dams. No doubt bigger leaks inside their homes. Everyone I’ve talked to up here is lamenting the consequences of this winter’s pounding. From plugged sewer vents to massive ice dams. The combination of unusual amounts of snow and colder than normal temperatures has combined with episodes of warmer weather to create quite a mess for some of us.

So what is the fix? Right now, the best I can do is try to keep as much of the snow off the roof to prevent additional ice build up. I have been unable to find someone with an ice steamer to come steam off the ice. I have also been unable to find a machine to rent. I could buy one for somewhere between $4,000-$8,000--not happening. The long-term fix is to gut the attic, and make sure there is proper insulation. Remove and fix any damage, and install ice melt cables on the roof and in the gutters in anticipation of next winter. You might ask why don't I make an insurance claim. Well, this IS a pre-existing problem. I also have a huge deductible. And then my premium will go up. This is not catastrophic. And I do have help. 

Also, a consequence of all the extra snow is that I may now be facing a problem with the well.
The well cap has exposed wiring coming out the top of it; and although there is a wishing well roof over it, the snow has grown to almost meet the exposed wires. I tried to shovel a path out there, but soon got bogged down in 4 feet of snow with mushy footing underneath. Not to mention the berms created by plowing that are taller than I am! I sure wish I had snow shoes right now! There is simply no way for me to get out there and remove the snow. I had noticed this when I looked at the house before I bought it and was assured it was fine. Not to worry. Well, I was worried then and I'm worried now. All I need is to short out my well and be without water!

And yet, it could be that before that might happen, my water pressure tank could fail. There is no relief valve. No shut off valve. The plumbing is rusty and wonky to say the least. All the plumbing here is subject to replacement.

And yet, I do feel lucky. I’ve heard horror stories of others’ actual sewer pipes freezing. Something like that spells BIG Trouble. I may have some issues, but so far, they are not something catastrophic. (fingers crossed, knock on wood, offerings to the gods).

I knew there were lots of issues with this property before I bought it. I waived an inspection in part because I was in quite a hurry to find myself a place to live, but also because I knew it would never pass an inspection. So I deal with it. As best I can. With help from wherever it may come from.

Thankfully, help does seem to be there when I need it. Maybe not immediately, but eventually. And I’m reminded that it’s only life after all. I am safe, warm and fed. My pets are safe, warm and fed. This too shall pass. And then when I look back at my first winter in my house, I may chuckle at how minor all these problems actually were! Who knows what challenges summer might bring? I can only imagine.

On a more thrilling note, Nikki, my daughter Maren, and I saw a moose--TWICE--last week not more than a mile or so from the house. Pretty cool! (hm...looks a bit like Bigfoot now, doesn't it?)