The Handyman Does His Laundry Here

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“Yesterday’s gone on down the river and you can’t get it back.” – Larry McMurtry, Lonesome Dove

In the two plus months my husband has been gone this time, the handyman has come to my home multiple times and done nothing.

Except his laundry.

He’ll drop off materials he buys at Lowes with my husband’s credit card (that I pay).

One day it’s lumber by the back door for the steps he was supposed to fix.

Another day it’s a bunch of Durarock leaning by the front door outside, even though there is an 1800 square foot garage.

Once it was a stack of tile outside the office, just waiting to be installed as a new floor.

I know he comes and goes because he will lock me out of the house.  Then I will have to break into my own home through the garage.

Once in a while he leaves me a note about how he came in and petted the dogs.  About how he’ll be back on Saturday to fix the screen so the wasps will stop stinging me, or call me that night to set up a time to come work.

But he never does.

I wondered what he was doing coming and going, since he “charges” me for each visit (against the $500 we gave him, to pay his back rent).  He complains about the gas it takes to get here, so why all of the visits?

One day I found his laundry detergent and a note.

The note said he’d turned over my laundry for me.

So I found what used to be in the dryer, laying on my bed in a wrinkled heap – the kids’ clothes.  Not only wrinkled but laying on top of the part of my bed where the dog sleeps – and now covered with dog hair.

My handyman who does nothing is creating Lowes bills for me and causing me to re-do my chores.

And you know how much I appreciate having to re-do laundry.  Which is to say, not. at. all.

I texted him back once and he told me not to text him, because he can’t always find his reading glasses.  I should call him.

When I left a phone message, he didn’t call back for three days.

He always has an excuse.  The phone company dropped his data plan.  He was sick.  Something.  Over time, they get very inventive.

The kids and I speculated, did he actually do anything here today except lock us out?  They’d wander the house, looking for signs, and report back,”No, Mom, nothing.  I don’t see anything he did.”

Then one day he wrote a note and in it he said that he’d stopped by to pick up his tools, to go to another job.

That’s when it dawned on me that he wasn’t coming and going for nothing.  He was taking my husband’s tools out of the garage and “borrowing them” to work on another job while failing to do a thing for me.


Fesity Gentlemen


When I look at the image above, which is of the beach on the island where my husband lives, I wonder if I lived there, would I like it?

The fact is, I have no idea.  I have what I deem to be a ridiculous situation going on here at home.  The one time I visited there I enjoyed looking at the view for about 10 minutes and then I wanted to know, what were we going to DO?

There probably isn’t very much to do on a small island.

But the fact is, I enjoy the same things there that I enjoy here.  I know this because someone forced me to think about it.


We were together


The toddler in that photo is now seven and a half.  The mastiff is no longer a pup, but is an old arthritic dog who can barely move around.  The neighbor with the miniature horses that you can see in the background has moved away.  My husband is gone.  I still have the leash.

The counselor I’ve been working with the past couple of months asked me to figure out what I love.  She asked me to consider how I got to where I am.  She points out how I reference back to others when asked about myself.

Women are so good at that, aren’t they?  We consider everyone else before ourselves.  That’s not to say that we aren’t selfish, but when we’re selfish are we making good use of our time to ourselves?  Taking care of others can be a convenient way to avoid what we want and who we are.  But I have a lot of men in my life, and they are awesome for clarity and self-knowing.

It’s really tough for me to soften up as she suggests, because as soon as I do, I get clobbered.

I guess that’s good for boundary setting, but I’ve about finished with that lesson.

“We were together.  I forget the rest.”  That’s a perfect way to describe what I value.

What brings me joy?

Just having a little adventure like going to the neighbors with the toddler, to see the miniature horses.

Surprises like walking out of the airport in the Caribbean and being greeted by hundreds of cats roaming the parking lot.  And a rum punch at check-in.

Making a deal with my husband that we would save those cats by creating a cat sanctuary, some day.

Driving on the left with my hands over my eyes (as the passenger!) to visit a relative’s grocery store and getting a tour of the freezer.

Sitting in the office with my husband and listening in to all of the goings on, meeting people, and then being whisked off on a golf cart to the next emergency.

Lunch and phone calls with friends.

Swimming in the ocean or the pool.  Talking to the swim instructor or the other parents at pool parties.  Birthday cake.


Working with you all in intuitive readings.

Being focused on work and having the day fly by.

Hooting back at my owls.

Riding my kid’s bike around in circles in front of my house.

Seventies music and podcasts while walking through the neighborhood. Breaking a good sweat exercising.

Driving up A1A on a beautiful day.

Basically, I have a few Big Dreams sitting out in the future and in the meantime, I enjoy the pleasant moments as they come along.  I make note of the signs, synchronicity, messages from spirit as they appear, and I work them into the fabric of my every day life.

It’s gotten far easier to cope with things like handymen who don’t work, house cleaners who don’t notice weevils in the pantry, the power going out, things breaking down, tires that repeatedly have to be brought in for patching, and all of life’s everyday annoyances.

Mostly, I cope.  Sometimes I learn something new, out of necessity.  Sometimes I get pissed off and rant and rave for a while until I calm down.  Sometimes I laugh about it.

Sometimes I wait for other people to make up their minds and take action, and sometimes I say forget it and do my own thing, when I want and how I want.

Do you do it any differently?

I wonder if this might be the same problem I used to have with religion and spirituality?  I didn’t see any difference between the two, at first.  People would have strong opinions about it and explain it to me, their way.  It took me years to truly understand why that was an issue.

The reason was, it was not one of my issues!  I wasn’t raised with any religion or religious training, so it didn’t bring up any pain for me.

Eventually I came to understand, through listening, how for some people religion and spirituality have absolutely nothing in common.

When concern is expressed over how I will cope this summer when the kids go to be with my husband, when someone asks if I ever follow through and take action on projects that I want to create, when I am told that I “sound better today”, I get defensive because 1) of course I will cope! What is the alternative? 2) I wrote my 120 page course and published it in one month, when the spirit moved me, and sold a bunch even though I never figured out automated checkout.  I am a huge do-er but…in spurts and when I feel like it and 3) holy cow, I was fine when I sounded bad and I am fine right now.

If I am not fine, I will tell you.  If I don’t get what I want or feel I need from someone I’d like to get it from, maybe I could learn to accept that and create it for myself.  Not everyone is capable of everything.   Even though upsets happen in life, I am not a believer in the pity party (at least not for more than 5 minutes at a time) and if that makes me tough, then…it does.

I like to follow along with what spirit presents to me.  If something doesn’t feel ready or quite right just yet, I don’t see that as avoidance, I see it as smart planning and not “pushing the river.”  Slade once wrote a great article about not thrashing around so much, screaming,”I don’t have the answer!” when life present quandaries and challenges.  He suggested just quieting down and looking into the river for the coin, letting the swirling mud settle down.  Because once gravity has done its job, you can reach in and pluck the coin right out of the river – once you can see it.  I like to live like that.

I suppose I will keep paying attention when I go into defensive posture or getting my back up, because there are probably plenty of answers there.  I won’t pretend that having to wait (in all aspects) is fun.  I am getting annoyed with the process.  Mainly because it is interfering with my peace of mind and the way I like to wander through life.

I don’t mind not having answers nearly as much as I mind feeling that someone else has the answer but refuses to tell me, for my own good.  Worse would be if they turned out to be wrong, in the end.

Still, I’ll trust the process and see where it brings me.

As stubborn and belligerent as we can be, in time it may turn out to be much like the difference between religion and spirituality, merely a matter of perspective and understanding.  I’m working with a few friends right now, and isn’t it interesting how the same themes and problems cycle throughout our lives at the same time.

Sometimes we can help each other by talking it out.  Sometimes we can say, if I were you I’d let that go, but I am not you, so do what you want.  Sometimes there are epiphanies.  Sometimes you lead, sometimes you follow.

Either way, there’s always cake, and rum punch, so I guess we’re good.

P.S. I’ve decided to open up Psychic Sparks for the summer for everyone who wanted to do the Professional Intuitive Mentorship Program with me but didn’t get the chance.  Limited spaces,  I’ll shut it down when I am at capacity.

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  1. Mary Stephenson says:

    Hi Julie

    I would say your handyman is taking you for a ride…change the locks and kiss it good-bye!

    Maybe we should all plan like we are going to live forever, but live like we won’t live another year. We might really enjoy living each day and let go of what is not important or worth fretting over.

    We have sold our house and within less than 2 weeks we will be making the move to our rental house. From city life to 3.8 acres. I shall enjoy the open spaces and we have a great view of the mountain ranges. It is scary leaving the dysfunctional known but, also exciting to see what the next phase of life will transpire. Don’t like the renting part but we have to let the dust settle to see what we want and what we can afford. Can’t pick the wrong place to buy or we will be stuck with it for a very long time (houses don’t sell up there very well).

    New beginnings and what we will be doing shall be 180 from what we are living now. Can’t believe how isolated we have become…you would think in a big city there would be tons of places to go and plenty of stuff to do. Maybe, but it is not always safe and the events are usually so packed it becomes a nightmare to attend.

    At times I think we all need to evaluate what is working and what is not and how different our lives might be if we jump outside of our comfort zone of complacency even if it isn’t really working for us. Can’t go back and seize the years we wasted on doing what everyone else thinks we should be doing.

    Wishing you a happy summer and hope you figure out what works best for you.


    • Hi Mary, So happy to hear the move is finally on! I wish you every happiness in your new adventure.

      Oh the handyman – well, he actually doesn’t have a key 🙂 He worked for my husband on and off for years, and he is the only person I can call in an emergency, but just like everyone else since my husband left, he has disappeared. He will reappear again some day when he needs more money, and when he feels like working. Oh how funny – as I am typing this he just pulled up in the driveway.

  2. That handyman and I would be at odds pretty quickly. I’d lock him out and take his tools back. Sounds like a real jerk, or someone who is both clueless and thoughtless.
    Josh recently posted..Some Dreams Die & Some Are DelayedMy Profile

    • This falls under the category of Beggars Can’t Be Choosers. He came by right after I posted this – not sure if I beckoned him with my awesome skills or pointing out that my husband will be back in a couple of weeks did the trick 🙂 Seems like when someone has to face my husband they snap to it, but when it’s just me they’re all “see you next year.” Just like every one of these guys, when there is work, they exhaust themselves in the heat all week so doing a side job on their day off doesn’t sound that appealing. Part of me is sympathetic to that, while the other part just wants the job done sometime this year, thanks.

  3. Maybe the handyman could at least clear the weevils out of the pantry while he does his laundry. I can’t believe he hasn’t noticed them either – no doubt he’s been in there. 😛
    The Painted Universe recently posted..Face TimeMy Profile

  4. Oh my god.. my blood was boiling at the audacity of the lazy $#@ handyman! Oh hell no! I would conveniently help him do that laundry (after moving my kids’ clothes no less! in a crumpled heap, left on the bed, creep factor is strong there) with 2 cups of bleach, folded and dried perhaps with a bow on it for a laugh. Then again I’m a little agro when it comes to someone repeatedly pushing boundaries! lol. Then I’d fire him and change the locks.

    I never thought ‘Oh what WILL she do?’ while you shared you’d have the summer solo. I thought ‘AH, peaceful! and the kids are in good hands with their dad and having a true adventure’ . Was the rum punch airport Charlotte Amalie airport by any chance? When I flew to live on the island in USVI I landed there and had that I was so surprised, it was a neat touch and a fun little extra

  5. HIlarious – this handy man needs a reality show, Julie!

    sometimes we actively sign up to volunteer and help people. I guess in this case, you’re doing it even without even being asked 🙂 Check around the house and make sure he doesn’t have a tent up at night lol

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