Speedbump: Thoughts on sticking around for a while longer

speed_bumpWe were going to move in six months.  And we’re deferring it for a while – at least six to ten months longer.  Which is fine, but…

It sucks.  It really sucks.  I was really looking forward to the changes moving to Smalltown Ontario would bring.  I was looking forward to working part time and spending more time home with the kids.  Moving from Big City apartment to Smalltown house would bring so many things – more space for us all, a backyard, and importantly our own washing machines.

I know our decision to move is simply a delay, but, the inconvenience of living where we do is really weighing on me.

We live in an old apartment building, a close drive to all amenities and only 15 minutes from downtown Toronto.  I can see Lake Ontario and the CN tower from my living room window.  To the north I look at expansive greenspace.  If feels like we are living in a treehouse.

We love the location, hate the traffic, and sometimes enjoy the lifestyle here.  Museums, art galleries, entertainment are all a short drive away (providing there is no traffic).  But the day-to-day stuff is wearing me down.

Laundry is our biggest nightmare.  Imagine the amount of laundry five people (three aged five and under) create.  Mountains of laundry, and sometimes that’s just in a day.  Laundry means we either take it all out to a laundromat, and do an entire month’s worth of laundry in three hours; or we drag it down sixteen stories and try to use the laundry facilities in our building. The laundromat in our building is an entire post (or novel!) into itself.  Machines break, neighbours chat, complain and argue.  Stuff goes missing and stuff is found.

Either way, doing laundry is a heck of a lot of work in our world.  So Hubby and I do what any normal people would do – we procrastinate.  And the laundry piles up.  Right now Hubby is sorting acres of dirty laundry in our living room while Baby Dunk bulldozes through the piles, mixing reds and whites at will.  Little Miss Adorable sits beside a towering mountain of laundry and pulls out her clothes and sorts her own stuff into little piles.

Lack of really accessible laundry facilities aside, one bugaboo any highrise dweller will complain of is moving stuff in and out of the building.  Today I managed to bring in a week’s worth of groceries with the door-holding help of Mr. Sensitive.  I pushed Little Miss Adorable in her stroller while pulling a large shopping buggy behind me.

What does this look like?

Like a small freakshow on wheels.

Park minivan in underground garage.  Lift stroller out of van.  Lift shopping buggy out of van.  Watch for moving vehicles in parking garage.  Load ten bags of groceries into the shopping buggy, being careful of eggs and bread.  Lift Mr. Sensitive out of the van.  Caution him about traffic.  Lift Little Miss Adorable out of van and into stroller.  Push stroller and pull shopping buggy while Mr. Sensitive holds the stroller handle.   Yes, we look like a small train or circus side show as we creep to parking garage exit.

Exiting the parking garage is quite complex.  Heavy metal fire doors and ‘The Bump’ block our every move. 

Open first heavy metal firedoor.    Use shopping buggy to prop door open.  Push stroller inside small alcove and push stroller up onto ‘The Bump’.

The Bump is a large step in the middle of the alcove, about 10 inches high and 24 inches wide.  It spans the length of the alcove.  Think of it as an enormous speedbump for pedestrians and strollers.

Everyone in the building hates The Bump.  A unifying force, it obstructs the lives of all, equally.  Property management cannot remove The Bump because it contains live electrical wires (or so we are told).  So everyone using the parking garage must step up, on, and over the stupid bump day after day.

The process of unloading stuff continues:

Park stroller on top of The Bump while unlocking second metal firedoor.  Tell Mr. Sensitive to hold heavy metal door open while I push stroller through and drag shopping buggy up and over the bump.  The weight of the door is pulling Mr. Sensitive off his feet.  Once stroller and buggy are inside I then hold the door open and help Mr. Sensitive come in.

Mr. Sensitive presses the elevator button and holds the elevator door while I load the stroller and the shopping buggy inside.  Today he was in tears, the transition stresses him out that much.  I wasn’t too far behind him. 

Einstein says the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, while expecting different results.  Bringing stuff into the building and over The Bump is the very picture of insanity.

But you keep doing it.  And you do get used to it after a while.  Except now my back hurts.

What obsticals do you endure on a regular basis?  Do you have any daily hassels that are a real pain in the…?


About Angela

Super-powered, Special Ed teacher and special needs mama to FOUR (!) children with an assortment of special needs; including Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and Prader Willi Syndrome. Our family features a heavy dose of good ol' ADHD). I blog about our halfpastnormal life.
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3 Responses to Speedbump: Thoughts on sticking around for a while longer

  1. funnygurl2 says:

    My current daily hassle is watching that my front tire on my car doesn’t get too low. It has a slow leak. I tried to do the responsible thing and take it in to be patched. They said they couldn’t find a hole, so they just cleaned some corrosion from the rim. I found myself a week later on my way to a job interview inflating it at a gas station.

    I sympathize with your laundry frustrations. As a place that you have to go to that feels like torture, I put the laundromat on my list second only to visiting someone at a nursing home.

  2. Ivy says:

    The single biggest quality of life improvement my family has ever made was to build our own fully accessible house (no bumps anywhere). When you get to your perfect and amazing home, you will feel blessed every day. The struggle to get there is worth it in the end.

    In the meantime, many grocery stores offer a delivery service option. You pick out your groceries online, or have a standing weekly order, and they deliver it to your door for a small surcharge. My brother (who has CP and lives independently) really loves this service. I know that some dry cleaners offer a similar option and some of them do wet laundry too. It ends up being all about spending the money and digging for the right team of providers.

    And when I’m pushing Rain’s wheelchair while dragging a huge shopping cart full of groceries, I like to wear a really outrageous hat (or shoes or scarf or something). That way, the stares I get are clearly about my fabulous fashion choices, not the circus of wheeled vehicles, right?

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