I am about to lose my shit. BIG. TIME. What started as a little renovation project that involved taking one wall down and putting one new wall up has turned into a bloody $*%(#)$ nightmare. And all the screeching and tears indicate that I am definitely awake for the whole stupid thing.

Two words sum up our problem: lead paint. Two more words make this problem especially upsetting: dismissive contractor.

Like most people who live in old houses, we've got lead paint. Ours just happens to be on the hardwood floor in the Turtles' future room. We didn't think much of this paint initially because it was under a piece of old shag carpeting that was in our walk-in closet. When the wall to the closet came down and the carpet came up, we saw that the floor was green and it looked a little incongruous next to the regular old pine boards. As we were about to embark on the refinishing project, it occurred to us that it might be a smart idea to check to make sure that lovely green wasn't lead. Well, duh.

That's when things started to get really tricky. Our contractor was just going to go ahead and sand it off with no extra precaution. After a call to the Rhode Island Department of Health, I put the kibosh on that. The contractor dismissed my concerns which really pissed me off. There I go again being an overly cautious mother because I don't want my three little girls (the majority of whom aren't even eight freaking months old) to breathe in lead dust. So I kicked her off the job. (The fact that our floor contractor is also bald because she is undergoing chemotherapy for ovarian cancer is not lost on me. Apparently, I am the only one seeing the irony here.)

We managed to get Vivi's floor refinished but the smell was so toxic that we moved out of the house for a night. The Radisson felt like an oasis of calm until bedtime when NO ONE would go to sleep. (Of course anyone with a half a brain could have foreseen the hotel disaster coming but my quarter of a brain has clearly been fully expended on the remodeling project itself.)

Now we are all camped out in the basement and waiting until Saturday morning when the lead abatement guy can come and tell us how he is going to empty out our savings.


  1. Oh, dear. What a pain. I'm so sorry.

    How can people not take lead paint seriously??? I don't get it.


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