We are DIY-remodeling a kitchen. My best friend (NOT ME – I swear!!) is pregnant.
You would think there wouldn’t be a whole lot of similarities between the two endeavors, after all:
- She’s building a human being (though I still call it a gremlin) whereas everything we’re building will be inanimate.
- BFF’s progress can be measured weekly by the similarity of the gremlin in size to various fruits and vegetables*, whereas ours is better measured by the number of nails going through the nail gun or the number of staples used to install batts of insulation these days.
- The ongoing costs for her gremlin will continue for 18+ years, whereas I don’t expect us to have any significant ongoing costs with our kitchen.
But given that so much of my friendship with BFF has seen us going through similar things at the same time (in college, we got inadvertently dragged in the same direction so often that we joked we had an invisible rope that connected our hips), I suppose I shouldn’t be too surprised to discover there are actually a ton of similarities between pregnancy and remodeling a kitchen (what I’m calling our respective “2015 projects”) and we’ve had quite a bit to relate to with each other lately.
Here’s our list so far:
- Ideas for both the kitchen and the pregnancy have been floating around in discussions with our respective spouses for several years in generalities, but both projects had required more detailed plans of action that really took shape throughout 2014. Really, the pregnancy and our kitchen took about a year of hard-core planning before we felt comfortable to take any concrete steps to put those plans into action.
- This is the first time we’ve both ever attempted a project of this type and this magnitude, though we have taken on and conquered similar smaller projects. Mr PoP and I have successfully completed what we thought were pretty big DIY projects before (roofing, siding, tiling…), and BFF has been expanding her repertoire of child-care by caring for nieces and nephews and coaching youth sports leagues at varying ages. None of those earlier endeavors involved loss of life or limb for any involved and ended with pretty happy results (the last batch of BFF’s soccer kids were still all oddly thrilled at the end of their zero-win season), so can be counted as successful trial runs for these bigger projects.
- The pregnancy and our remodel basically commenced at the same time (holidays 2014), and current estimated completion dates have us reaching the finish line around the same time, too (current goal – Sept 2015**). Who knew incubating a gremlin and DIY remodeling a kitchen would take the same length of time?
- When we do cross the finish line (with a remodeled kitchen and new
gremlintiny person), we hope to have something that we will be thrilled with and want to keep forever.
- The process to get to that finish line hasn’t always been rosy.
- Physically, it’s been darned unpleasant at times. So far BFF has had some pretty stellar morning sickness (TMI?) and is no doubt in for some more uncomfortable months. Mr PoP and I haven’t gotten physically ill, but scratches, bruises, and cramped muscles of known and unknown origin, not to mention living without A/C completely for 3 solid months*** haven’t been the most pleasant physical sensations.
- The stress of these projects has made our tempers a tad shorter than usual. Unsolicited advice or the hint that we’re doing anything wrong or on the wrong timetable makes us tense up. These are our projects and we will do them the way we want to, damnit! (Well, we do take into account medical advice and building code – again, wanting to create something that will have no problem outliving us.)
- And sadly, we’ve both now cried at the office due to the stress of these endeavors overwhelming us in our daily lives. Coincidentally the tears were on the same morning around the same time, but over a thousand miles apart. (Like I said, we’re somehow cosmically attached at the hip at times.) These are really big things we’re trying to do while also kicking ass at work and life and the stress and pressure overloaded and spilled out from our eyes. Thankfully we’re both overachievers who get into the office well before others, so were able to hide the tears before our bosses got in. But man, office crying is the worst!
As we look forward toward many more months to come with our projects, I have no doubt there will be more similarities that we discover between pregnancy and remodeling a kitchen. But here’s hoping they don’t involve any more tears… that is, until they are tears of joy.
* I am eating the “fruit of the week” in solidarity. Just had some guac – Yum! It’s going to be tough to keep up when the gremlin gets as big as a watermelon, though!
** We reserve the right to change this at any time. =)
*** Just got A/C back this weekend. No drywall yet, but this is at least helping us sleep better at night.
What other similarities between pregnancy and remodeling do BF and I have to look forward to?