Happy: A Quest for Life After Death

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Kenmore HE2 Plus Front Load Washer

I'm trying to pack for a trip, and the washing machine, which contains every last piece of underwear I own (but one), is flashing an error code at me.

This summer has introduced some new twist every few days that feels like it should be the last straw ... until another straw is added. Of course the aftermath of Mat's passing and my mom's illness and then passing dominate the scene. But then there was the broken garage door, the broken dishwasher, the refrigerator that leaked into the basement and damaged the drywall, the broken car, the broken cell phone (not replaced yet, so I'm not getting your messages and texts), my six-year-old's broken arm, probably broken friendships because I have little time and energy to return calls and emails, and now the washing machine.

And the broken wedding ring. I realized Friday that the diamond had fallen out, and have spent hours scouring the house since then. On the plus side, the house is much cleaner than it's been in months.

I've been thinking about the poem "Invictus" for the last few days. Maybe that's a little dramatic, seeing as I'm not about to be executed, but it seems to help. When I first read it, I found it too depressing to be helpful. Now I find the optimism in it.

William Ernest Henley

OUT of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

I could use your prayers to help me find the diamond for my wedding ring. I am not ready to quit wearing it, and the gaping hole where the diamond should be is painful. There's the symbolism of it, and also those prongs are sharp.

In the meantime, my unconquerable soul and I are going to try to fix the washing machine.


Thom said...

I'm sure you have tons of friends (and home and vistiting teachers?) reading this who can help out, but if you need a hand, give me a call. My cell number is 281-7316, preceeded by a Boston (not Arlington) area code.

- Thom G

Thom said...

And wow, that profile picture is out-of-date.

laura said...


Jenn Jenson said...

No locusts? She asked, hoping to elicit a chuckle.

I will never understand why life seems to pile on sometimes.

amydear said...

You are making me cry again. Maybe I'll quit crying and start praying.

The Proud Llama said...

Maybe your diamond ring broke the washing machine? ;) Love ya, Human Kimberly.

Renn @ TheBigCandMe said...

Great writing and emotion in your post! I hope you find your diamond. (Maybe it will find you.) You deserve something sparkly!

Sweeney Household said...

It's been about a week since you've lost the diamond --- any good news? Colin and I prayed to find a few Lego pieces to a Speed Racer set. Do you want me to come over and say a prayer with Colin? (i'm not joking...)

I really liked reading this poem with your insights and your overwhelming list of challenges this year/ 1/2 year. Does that sound trite? Your blog could succeed as a book Kimberly!

Anonymous said...


You will always have ME for a friend, even tho that is sort of a bad deal at time (you know that story...) and I am ON the wedding ring, with prayers and visualization. You can always have MY diamond if you need one! -- Loonie

SLP said...

Beyond this place of wrath and tears...shall find, me unafraid.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

These phrases in particular struck me.
I audibly grunted in my office as I read through your 'broken list'.
And several other explitives came to mind.
If I were there, I would shake my fist in frustration with you and then I would stand by your side, to help you find a missing piece of your soul...

Scrubbing with from a distance but close at heart...

MAAC said...
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