Monday, February 20, 2017

Kitchen sink

I am the proud owner of a new kitchen sink, faucet and garbage disposal.

The sink is a sleek 33-inch-by-22-inch, drop-in, single-basin, enamel-coated cast-iron number. The faucet is a single-handle, spot-resist, pull-down stainless steel with optional spray plus an in-sink soap dispenser. The powerful-yet-not-too-noisy disposal features auto-reverse and a removable cover.

1. I feel like a genuine adult with these purchases.
2. I am thankful for friends who help me make these kinds of decisions -- Melissa and Julie, who both offer invaluable home advice.
3. I am thankful for plumbers who can install all of this stuff.
4. I am thankful that plumbers work on Presidents' Day, a day that teachers have off.
5. I am thankful for side jobs that allow me to save extra money to help fund these purchases and services.

I can't tell you how many nights Steve stood at the sink -- the old sink -- and washed dishes. He was often found walking around the house with a dish towel slung over his shoulder. He liked that washing dishes offered a daily chance to begin and finish a task. He would usually sing and dance a little while he worked. He continued the chore after he was diagnosed, for as long as he could.

When he became too unsteady to stand for long or just too worn out for anything extra, he relented. But he'd sit nearby and visit with whomever took over -- sometimes me, often Aunt Ami or Sharon or Jackie or Allie or Liz or Julie or Betty -- one of the heroes who helped us get through those really rough days.

Over time, the old sink became chipped in three or four spots, the victim of a heavy Le Creuset pan. No matter how often or hard I scrubbed, there were a couple of spots that just wouldn't come clean. In the past few weeks, the faucet started to leak. I've repaired the disposal on my own (thank you, Layne and Jenny and YouTube) about half a dozen times.

It was time for new. Steve would have agreed. (Though he probably would have chosen a more modern fixture. He was always edgier than I am.)

There are moments -- many, many moments -- when I'm hard on myself. I should be more organized, I should clean more, I should answer emails and texts faster, I should go to sleep earlier, I should exercise more, I should be more patient, I should be less reliant on others.

Tonight I'm pausing for a moment to remind myself that this single-mom business is tough, yes, but overall I'm doing OK. I'll celebrate later tonight, as I wash dishes in that brand-new sink -- singing and dancing a little as I go.

Isn't it lovely?