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April 12, 2020 by

Finding the Silver Lining in Toilet Paper

I am trying to find the silver lining every day. I am grateful I have a job I can do from home that contributes to the public health efforts especially during this time that I will refer to here as the “situation”.  I am also grateful that I have a home – a roof over my head and a place I can call my own! Hello-right?!? So many don’t have stable housing, employment , health care coverage (oh to be in the US  now…) and access to food. And what’s up with the run in the stores on toilet paper (Elaine from Seinfeld  – “can you spare a square?”- Uhhmm, No.)?!?. Perhaps the bidet really is a good idea!?

This week my water pipe sprung a leak under my bathroom sink unbeknownst to me for a few days. As I went to replace a toilet paper roll, I lifted the open package and couldn’t understand its weightiness. Alas the TP bag was wet, very wet. Arrghhh – of all things I had to figure out, now it was how to dry a product that’s meant to absorb moisture. Worse yet, this product now is practically irreplaceable!

As many people who follow me or know about me,  you may know that I live with a mental health diagnosis. I could have gone all sorts of ways with this situation that would have or could have impacted my mental health stability due to my momentary shock, panic and despair.  Yes, despair, as at first I broke down in tears realizing how this ‘situation’ turned a mundane thing into a THING… it almost crushed me but it didn’t.

Through the tears, I had to plan what to do. My plan seemed so funny the tears turned to laughter.

My TP plan:
As I sat out my TP in the sun to dry – it was however oddly laughable.
First – keep it safe, it’s like gold. Sit it out where no one could steal it. I live on the top floor – balcony on top floor, CHECK.
Second – realizing I live in sunny CA- I’m lucky I can sit it out in the sun and warmth to dry. CHECK.
Third- my neighbors can see TP rolls sitting out on my balcony – what must they think of me? I’m I recycling used TP (gross); I’m making my own TP to sell on some sort of Etsy shop – washi paper TP for sale! (Phhfft – “washi paper- yes TP does wash -y). Don’t worry about what the neighbors think – CHECK.
Fourth- pictures of Elaine from Seinfeld is like an visual ear-worm (is that an eye-worm?!) – very funny, laughter is good – CHECK.

And then I realized that I would need to call the plumbers. They would have to come into my protective bubble – my home. Two strangers had to enter my home during a time  when it isn’t most advisable. There were no stereotypical handyman/plumber butt cracks from pants weighted down by tools. Or if so, I missed it, as I couldn’t really find the calm place or funny. It was a bit scary – my safety protective bubble had been burst. Or so I thought.

I do have Lysol spray, Clorox wipes , Microban spray,  antibacterial soap, hand sanitizer, disposable gloves …… and bleach. Not only do I have it – I had a lot of it for some time as I keep things in stock prepared for the inevitable (whatever the inevitable may be). I have cleaning products, TP and paper towels stored up  way before the “situation” and run on these items in the stores.

Sometimes my mental heath conditions work to my advantage. The world is now learning what it might be like for people who are “clean freaks” or have been given diagnosis of  obsessive compulsive disorder. We are damned prepared for this situation…and the unexpected plumbers that burst our protective bubbles to fix our sinks in order to save our precious toilet paper!

And that’s my story of a day of my life during “the situation” and truth to find, hold on tight to and share the silver lining.

What is your silver lining that you can share to help someone else during this “situation”?

“I really do think that any deep crisis is an opportunity to make your life extraordinary in some way.”  Martha Beck

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