Taking The Plunge

unsplash photo by tommaso fornoni

By Christy Gualtieri

I didn’t want to, but I had to.  The situation was getting out of control.  All the signs were present for danger: it was up to me to go downstairs, walk over to it, and just take a peek.  And when I did: all my fears were confirmed.  This was going to be a huge mess.

Let me start at the beginning.  When my family and I moved into our home a few years ago, we kept all of the appliances that came with the house, deciding to run them into the ground before going out and purchasing all-new things.  Many of the appliances proved to be short-lived once we settled in — the hot water heater was the first to go, and then the dishwasher.  But the washing machine and dryer, to my great dismay, kept hanging in there.

Don’t get me wrong.  I’m glad they worked, and I know that I am fortunate to be able to have possession of a washer and a dryer at all.  But they were ancient, and the dryer was the nosiest appliance on the face of the Earth, screeching this ludicrous noise the entire time it was running, clearly audible from its home in our cellar all the way up to the rooms at the top of the house.

I’m not normally what you would call a materialistic person, but I craved a new washer and dryer like you wouldn’t believe.  And, as luck would have it, the set broke down two years in.  I was extremely giddy when our new front-loaders were installed, practically dancing as I put in the first few loads.  They were beautiful! They were new! They were mine!

It’s been a year now.  And they’re moldy.

Well, the washer is, anyway.  It was a fact I couldn’t ignore anymore.  As vigilant as we tried to be in keeping the doors open when not in use and wiping it down to try, there were still standing water issues and black mold everywhere.

So we had to get in there, get to the source of the trouble, and then try to disinfect it.  It was not something I looked forward to, unlike all of those months when I had the old set and would fantasize about getting a new one.  This was the opposite of that.  But it had to be done.

I’m telling you all of this because it’s a new year, and if you’re like me, you’ve set a few goals.  But if you’re like me, there’s a good chance that you might not achieve those goals, because – and this was true of the moldy washer situation – I don’t like to get too uncomfortable.  I procrastinate.  I drag my feet.  I make excuse after excuse and then feel terrible when something I would’ve liked to accomplish has passed me right on by.  I knew that the washer was getting moldy.  I knew that if I didn’t do something about it, it wouldn’t fix itself.

I think about different interests I have, different projects I’d like to work on.  And I feel so stuck by them sometimes; feel a lot of pressure to Get It Done.  I think most creative people are like that.  But then I look at everyday situations where I have to get my hands dirty (sometimes literally), and I think of the sense of accomplishment that I get after I’ve gone through with it.  I think of the relief I feel, of the empowerment to try another thing, or a new one.  And it propels me toward the next goal.

I don’t know if you have any goals for 2017, and if you have them but are resigned to the fact that you’ll never be able to do it because you’re just sure you won’t be able to, I encourage you to head down towards it, roll up your sleeves, put on those waterproof gloves, hold your breath and plunge into what’s stopping you.  Find out what’s making your water stand, and fix it.  Or just try, anyway.  If you need help, there are professionals out there who now how to help you — seek them out.

And know I’m right there with you, too!

Until next time, be well!

Christy GualtieriChristy Gualtieri is a freelance writer specializing in pop culture, religion, and motherhood. She lives in Pittsburgh with her husband and son, blogs at asinglehour.wordpress.com, and tweets @agapeflower117. Follow PghPsych on Facebook and Twitter for daily updates, inspirational quotes, articles, and different events and causes related to good mental health.