"it must be nice living with a man"

When my brother Donal moved in with me a year ago, lots of people (especially relatives) all made that comment “It must be nice living with a man.” I was never quite sure how to take the comment- in some ways it was a little insulting since i, a single woman, have owned my own home and have done my own repairs for over 4 years without a man (except a few calls to my dad or brother Bren)… at the same time, i know people mean well when they make the comment and don’t mean it to sound like they think i can’t do it. Still, I am the homeowner, the repairs are my responsibility, regardless of what man may or may not live there. Not to mention Donal hasn’t had an abundance of experience being a homeowner and fixing stuff. Dont get me wrong, I love living with Donal, he’s a lot of fun, low key, plays piano, allows Suzie to treat him as a human (hairy) popsicle, and is a good balance for our estrogen ridden household 🙂 However, living with said man hasn’t really changed much as far as what people think- like yard work, repairs, ya know “man stuff” that i still do (and usually enjoy doing).

This weekend, it truly was great living with a man. Thursday night I began repairing the garage door… ugh… the steel hangers that hold the track on one side were twisted and bent, making the door open and close at an angle, which got worse over time and finally stopped working altogether. All the warning say, “Consult a professional. Springs and tension cords can be dangerous, etc.” making me a bit nervous… but it still seemed like a solveable repair and I decided it was time. Donal helped me manually open the door, replaced a roller, and handed me tools as i replaced the steel hangers. then the fun really began, trying to get the tension cables back connected correctly and attached to the dangerous springs. It was an exhausting couple hours for the two of us, and we’d gotten it figured out, but i needed a part at the hardware store to finish the repair, so at 11 pm on Thurs night, we called it a day and made plans to fix it Friday after work. I went to bed sore and exhausted!!

Friday I got the part, we worked on it for probably another hour and half, and finally finished. I’d never realized how heavy and difficult those doors are to move when the springs are not attached… nor how difficult it can be to get the tension right and threaded through the serious of pulleys, springs, etc. I can’t tell you how thankful i was / am that Donal agreed to lend his height, muscle, and brains to the project- I couldn’t have done it by myself!! We both held our breath as we finally got it done, manually opened and closed the door to make sure it really worked, and finally connected it to the automatic opener. Visions of springs flying and killing someone, the whole door crashing down -totally destroyed, and other similar thoughts flitted through my brain as i prepared to hit the button… brrrrr. creeeaaakkk…. it works!!!! Yay!! God is good!

It sure is nice living with a man…

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