Y’all, I made it over a huge hurdle this weekend. After convincing myself that I wasn’t capable of doing the drywall in the studio myself (you can read more about that here), and then having no success in finding someone else to do the drywall for me, I jumped right in and did it myself. I had planned to start on Friday, but then Matt had a horrible day, so I ended up not being able to start on it until Saturday afternoon.
Here’s what I was working with. I had already moved all of the outlets (I explain here why this was necessary) and filled in the foam that had to be removed with canned spray foam. So as of Saturday, I had to cut away the excess foam, install the drywall, and then tape, mud, and sand the joints.
I am the absolute slowest at installing drywall. It took me an embarrassingly long time just to install the five sheets of drywall on two walls. But I don’t even care, because by the time I went to bed on Saturday night, all of the drywall was installed.
That was a huge hurdle for me. After convincing myself that I wasn’t capable of doing it, it felt very good to end the day with the drywall done, and done pretty well.
No, I’m not nearly as good as a professional who installs drywall every day, but it looked pretty darn good, and the outlets didn’t look like a complete mess. So I was pretty pleased with the work.
And then yesterday evening, I was able to get the taping and mudding done before I went to bed. I’m not good at mudding at all. I’ve seen pros who put the mud on so smoothly that they barely have to do any sanding at all. But I’m not that person. 😀
I mud drywall much in the same way that I use wood filler. I pile it high in order to be able to sand it really smooth. And my drywall mud requires a ton of sanding. Most of my joints look pretty good…
These joints on the long mural wall turned out pretty good, even before they’re sanded.
They do still need quite a bit of sanding, though.
But the ones to the left and right of the window in the “office” area of the room are just ridiculous. 😀 I couldn’t get those smooth to save my life, so I just used my “pile it on” method. I was relieved to go in this morning and see that there were no cracks, so now it can be sanded smoothly.
I spent a few minutes sanding the area on the other side of the window, which started out looked just as rough as the picture above, to be sure I could get it smooth. It looks like it’ll work out just fine.
So I have quite a bit of sanding to do, but that goes pretty fast. I actually love sanding drywall mud. I find it to be a relaxing process since it sands so easily.
Once it’s sanded, I’ll need to give it a coat of primer. And then, barring any unforeseen circumstances, I’m pretty sure I can get the new wallpaper mural up today!! I’m so excited!
This whole drywall project really did go very smoothly, and while it wasn’t exactly a fun project, it wasn’t horrible. I mean, it was a hot, humid day, and I dragged the sheets of drywall out of the van directly onto the floor of the carport to cut each one before bringing it inside. But in hindsight, it was so much easier than what I had built it up to be in my head. The dread leading up to the project was much worse than the project itself.
As I was working, I did a whole lot of self-psychoanalysis. (Just putting my psychology degree to good use. 😀 ) In all seriousness, I wanted to know why, over the last few months, I went from being fearless and daring to self-doubting and fearful. There had to be an explanation for it. Changes like that don’t happen for no reason.
Well, I think I figured it out. At the beginning of this year, I was working on something, and I pulled a muscle on the right side of my back. It wasn’t horrible. On a scale of 1 to 10, the pain was probably about a 5. And while that’s tolerable, it definitely affected me when trying to do the things I need to do to care for Matt.
Matt is 6’1″ tall and weighs 219 pounds. I don’t ever have to pick him up. I mean, I couldn’t even if I wanted to. I’m not that strong, so we have a Hoyer lift that I use to get him from bed to his wheelchair, or from bed to his recliner. But there are still other things I have to do for him that require a great deal of strength, like move him over on the bed or get him dressed. So if I’m injured, I have a hard time doing those things.
I’ve never been injured to the point where I can’t do the things I absolutely need to do for him. But I have been injured to the point where Matt has to spend way more time in bed than he should. Remember years ago when I had that pinched nerve in my neck and back (around the time I was stenciling the music room walls)? That was a miserable time for both of us.
So when I pulled the muscle in my back at the beginning of this year, while it wasn’t horrible, it definitely affected me and the things I could do. I took it easy for about a week, and then it happened again. And while it still wasn’t horrible, I think something about having that happen twice in such a short period of time triggered a fear in me. (In hindsight, I don’t think I gave it enough time to completely heal, so I just re-aggravated it the second time.)
I mean, if something were to happen to me, and I couldn’t take care of Matt, he wouldn’t be able to stay in our home. He would have to go somewhere where he could receive the full-time care that he needs. So when I pulled that muscle a second time, I think that that, along with the fact that I was approaching my 50th birthday, triggered that “what would happen to Matt?” fear in me, and made me want to stop doing any of the things that could lead to me being injured — carrying heavy things, doing projects that might injure me, and even climbing on ladders.
You notice that I went from wanting to paint the studio to being okay with the current color? That’s because painting the room with the 12-foot ceiling would necessitate me climbing on a high ladder, and I had suddenly become fearful of climbing ladders. What if I fell? What would happen to Matt?
So I’m pretty convinced that that’s where all of this came from. That’s what caused this sudden self-doubt and fearfulness. I’ve never been afraid of injuring myself before, and in 30+ years of DIYing, I’ve never had a serious injury. But I let that fear creep in, and it changed me. So I’m going to do my very best to take control of that fear and continue to be the safety-conscious but fearless DIYer I’ve been all of my adult life. Because my worrying and living in fear won’t make me safer. If anything, it could make me more prone to accidents.
Addicted 2 Decorating is where I share my DIY and decorating journey as I remodel and decorate the 1948 fixer upper that my husband, Matt, and I bought in 2013. Matt has M.S. and is unable to do physical work, so I do the majority of the work on the house by myself. You can learn more about me here.