The Lies I’ve Been Telling Myself

Yesterday, I felt like I had some sort of breakthrough. I was stood up again yet again by another handyperson with whom I had made an appointment to give me an estimate for the drywall job in the studio.

I have had the absolute worst experiences with handymen. How many is this now? I’ve lost count. Let’s see.

  1. There was the guy I hired to do the most simple and basic job (haul away junk). He did half the job, and asked for the whole payment, and told me he’d be back the next morning to finish. I paid him, and then didn’t see him for six weeks. In the interim, I texted him twice, and twice he told me he’d be back the next day to finish. He was a no show both times. When he finally did come six weeks later to haul off the rest of the stuff, his truck bed was already piled full when he showed up, and he couldn’t get everything he had promised to take (and for which I had already paid him) into his already-full truck bed. But regardless, he declared the job done, and won’t respond to my texts.
  2. I made an appointment with another guy on a specific day and at a specific time. He didn’t show. I got a DM from him on Nextdoor later that evening telling me that we could reschedule. He didn’t apologize for standing me up, and didn’t offer any kind of excuse. It was just, “Hey, I think I was supposed to meet with you at 5:00 today. We can reschedule that for another day.” Ummm…no.
  3. I made an appointment with a woman via DM on Nextdoor who handles her husband’s handyman business. I messaged her, and she messaged me right back saying that I could call her any time. I called immediately, and she said they were at another person’s house giving them an estimate, and could probably come directly to my house after that. She said she’d call me back in five minutes. That was five days ago, and I still haven’t heard back.
  4. I made an appointment with another guy. He and his helper actually showed up when they said they would to look at the job. He was here five minutes, took some measurements, and said he’d text me later with an estimate. I didn’t hear from him that night or the next day. I finally texted him and asked if he had an estimate for me, and I got a read receipt showing that he read my text about two minutes after I sent it. That was two days ago, and I still haven’t heard back.
  5. I made an appointment with a woman who evidently has several work crews that do all kinds of remodeling and handyman jobs. She was supposed to be here yesterday at 5:00. At 5:30, she still wasn’t here and I hadn’t heard from her. I called and got no answer. I texted, and waited. I finally got a text back from her at 6:00, and she said that she was with her plumber and didn’t realize the time, and that I could give her a call next week and we can reschedule.

I don’t know how any of these people stay in business when they treat customers (or potential customers) with so little regard. To say that I was at the end of my rope yesterday evening would be an understatement. I was furious and frustrated and, quite honestly, feeling helpless.

Helpless. That’s a word that I’ve never thought I would associate with myself. I’ve always thought of myself as strong, capable, determined. I’ve always been the kind of person who will figure out a way, even if something seems impossible. Over the last 16 years that I’ve been writing this blog, I’ve had people ask me repeatedly, “Kristi, how did you do that by yourself?” I just did. Sheer determination, a very strong will, mixed with a heaping spoonful of stubbornness, has served me very well over the years.

But lately, something shifted in my mind, and not for the good. I don’t now if it’s just because I’m on the last room in our home and I’m feeling like I’m on the last mile of a marathon and I might not make it. I don’t know if it’s because I just had a milestone birthday and I’m feeling old and asking myself, “How did I get here already?” I really don’t know what it is, but about six months ago, there was a change in my mindset. Instead of being that strong, capable, determined person I’ve always been, I started telling myself that I can’t. I’m not capable. I’m not strong enough. I can’t do these things by myself, and if I don’t find help, they won’t get done because I can’t.

I’ve never been an “I can’t” person before. But I’ve told myself these lies so many times over the last few months that it’s just become depressing. Combine that with the fact that I haven’t been able to find a reliable person to do some of these things that I had convinced myself I couldn’t do, and that has led to a completely depressing feeling of helplessness.

Never in my life did I think that I could feel helpless. And yet, there I was yesterday, feeling helpless. I felt so helpless and discouraged that I cried and had a pity party for myself. And then I got angry and threw a little temper tantrum because these people keep standing me up, and I someone else has to do it for me because I can’t do it on my own.

Well, after about 30 minutes of that nonsense, my anger and frustration turned towards myself. I started wondering what in the world had happened to me. What have I become? How in the world have I convinced myself over these last few months that I’m not capable of doing these things?

I mean, we’re talking about drywall, for goodness sake! And it’s not even on the ceiling, or high up on the wall. We’re talking about drywall on the bottom part of the walls.

I’ve drywalled entire rooms in our house before, including the ceiling, by myself. Yes, it’s true that I promised myself that I’d never have to do drywall again because, quite frankly, I hate it. I hate installing drywall, and I hate taping and mudding even more. But my mindset had gone beyond just I don’t want to do this because I hate doing drywall. My mindset had gone to I’m not capable of doing this and I’m dependent upon someone else to do it for me. And not being able to find someone dependable to do it for me had led to that dreadful and unfamiliar feeling of helplessness.

I honestly don’t know how I had convinced myself of these lies. I mean, I’ve put cased openings in load-bearing walls in this house all by myself.

I’ve torn rooms down to the studs and rebuilt them all by myself.

And yet I was feeling helpless over five sheets of drywall? I had convinced myself that I’m not capable of doing this on my own. How did that happen?

Well, perhaps being stood up by all these people is exactly what I needed to snap myself out of this downward spiral I’ve been in over these last few months, because after all of my temper tantrums and pity parties yesterday, I found determination that I haven’t felt in a very long time. I started reminding myself of who I am and what I’ve done, and I reminded myself that I am VERY capable! I don’t need to depend on other people!

So I headed to Home Depot with a plan in mind. I was going to rent one of their $19 trucks, and get the drywall that I needed to finish the job myself. I ran into a little roadblock when I got there because they didn’t have any of the trucks, but I was determined. I still got my five sheets of drywall, but I had one of the guys help me cut each sheet down six inches so that they would fit in the van. I got everything I needed to get this drywall done! And as soon as Matt and I are finished eating lunch today, I will get it done.

And I’m going to stop telling myself “I can’t” and “I’m not capable.” I don’t know how or why these lies started creeping into my head, but I’m tired of those lies tumbling around in my head. As of yesterday, they’ve been issued an eviction notice, and I’m going to do everything in my power to get back to my old mindset where I tell myself that I can. I can’t stand that feeling of helplessness, and I don’t want to feel that again. I may have passed a milestone birthday, and I may be a bit older than I was when I started this blog, but I’m still strong, capable and determined…or at least I’m going to do my very best to get back to mindset. It may take a bit of time to get back there full steam, but in the meantime, I’m at least going to stop letting those lies take up residence in my head.



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  1. You go, girl! All the time wasted on calling and waiting is frustrating. This may not be a job you love but you are very capable of doing it. You’re going to feel awesome when it’s done! It will be empowering just to start!

  2. I am a Waco native and still live here. I have probably called the same people you have and had the same lack of response. I feel your pain.

    1. I am in Houston, Texas and have had the similar experiences. We are not asking these contractors/handyman for free services and yet we get ignored. For every 10 contractors I call, I get 2 responses. For those that do respond and make an appointment, many won’t show up and those that do don’t even bother to send me a bid. Guessing the demand for their services most be so high that they can afford to mistreat potential customers. Otherwise, I don’t know how else they can stay in business with that kind of work ethic.

  3. Kristi, you can do anything and everything! You are a superstar!! Strong, capable and so very smart. You’ve proven that many times. 💗💗

  4. I was tempted to say something similar yesterday…” I remember you doing drywall before and this isn’t overhead…” but I’ve disagreed with other bloggers, took one to task for something and she got miffed and blocked me. Tossed me in blogger jail for life, boom, done. So I tend to tiptoe around what I want to say. Now I’m going to say it— go get ‘em Kristi! #50isthenew30

  5. I feel your pain! It’s like you were telling our story today as my husband and I are having these same issues with folks. Like you, I do not know how these people stay in business. My husband and I joke that we should start our own construction/handyman business and provide exceptional customer service. That, along with good workmanship would go a long way in today’s world!!

    My favorite part though is your breakthrough! At times, we all have these self-doubts. Overcoming those is the hard part and sometimes just getting started is the hardest part. Even as we age, we can still get it done. Maybe at a little slower pace, but we’re still strong!!

    You Go Girl!! <3

  6. You go! You’ll have it done in no time and to your specifications. It’s terrible what we start telling ourselves as women as we age (hit 60 in Feb). We are not less capable because we are older. Not that I’ve met you, but you are the most innovative person I’ve never met. My dad is 85 and still wants things to do and fix. And he can, not as easily as 20 years ago, but he keeps going. Go and get it done!

  7. How does this happen? I hear these lies in myself too! Well, you are definitely “strong, capable and determined” and that’s a great combo for getting things done … and done right! Looking forward to seeing and reading about how this project progresses, and getting more Kristi tips on the process.

  8. Good for you!! You are a strong, capable, intelligent woman, and you can do anything.

    Another lesson… Never pay anyone the whole amount until they’ve finished the job to your satisfaction. Remember, it’s your money. You’re the boss when you hire someone to do something. They aren’t doing you a favor. They are doing a job that they are getting paid for, and you control payroll, so to speak. Just because they want the entire amount doesn’t mean you have to give it to them.

  9. You are one of the most capable persons I’ve ever encountered and “YOU CAN DO THIS”. I am constantly amazed at your abilities and knowledge. Your next project should be writing a book or something like that. Your journey has been fantastic and if you take all your blogs and put them together as a book, you would be a success in the book world.

  10. I have to admit that I was surprised when you refused to do this drywall patch initially. I don’t like drywall either. But I did all the patches in my rental house where the woman had run a daycare for her friends who worked. It was easy and I was cheap labor. I used my big quilting templates, square and rectangular, to cut around the holes & make the patch. Plenty of 1x2s and screws. I was done in one day. Patches were perfect! Hubs was amazed.
    Now considering that this drywall is going to be behind the cabinets, I wouldn’t have sweated that repair for a minute! Particularly since there are visible studs! A little different than the ceiling!
    There is a FB group called Handy Women where we help each other online with projects and jobs because of resources, age, scope of work, etc. Fantastic group. You would definitely be considered an expert! It has empowered so many women to jump into the repair/reuse/DIY pool! And from some of the things I’ve read, a bunch of your followers are already on there! You have been mentioned more than once! LOL

  11. I’m so glad to read this! As I read your post yesterday, it struck me as so odd that you weren’t willing (able?) to do the drywall after you’d done all the (to most people more difficult) electrical work yourself. Especially when it was just the lower part of the walls and not a ceiling or something that would be harder to do alone and when you had been making such good progress on the room. I even wondered a moment if you had some physical problem that was keeping you from doing it. I’m happy it was just a mental block and you have your mojo back!

  12. You’ve had an important breakthrough, girl! I’ve had feelings of inadequacy in the past, I think many people do. I convinced myself that I was a horrible wife, mother and daughter. One late night I had a breakthrough and realized I was a terrific person for all the people in my life. Congratulations on your breakthrough! You’ve already done all of that drudgery yourself and are very capable of doing it again. You’ve done so much and a beautiful home is your reward.

  13. I’m sorry I let you down yesterday. I knew you could do this and thought about writing to you. All that drywall will be behind your new cabinets so it doesn’t even have to be as smooth as you’d want for paint. I’m glad you figured out how to get the drywall home. My hubby wants to put some new siding on one side of the house where the sun has been hard on it and he kept trying to figure out how to fit it in our van or little truck. I told him the same thing about renting the truck. I was thinking Kristi why would you wait 4 months for someone to come do this when you could do it yourself in less than a week? I have confidence in you. Looking forward to seeing your mad woman progress now.

  14. Kristi, I wish you could see how much you have helped me to overcome the things I “can’t ” do, simply by following you on this blog since your condo days.
    We paid a professional company to redo our main bathroom last year (which cost more than our first house!) But it truly was something I couldn’t do. BUT they left behind 2 boxes of tiles…which got me thinking. My budget wasn’t going to allow me to pay someone to redo another bathroom anytime soon….so I looked back on your blog to give me confidence or determination, I’m not sure which!
    My husband went to work and came home to the vanity and toilet out in the garage and a trash can can full of broken up tile (my favorite part of the demo!) I got all the old thinset off and laid the new tile…all by myself! My husband painted the ceiling so my neck wouldn’t scream at me, but I did everything else…including a faux shiplap finish on all the walls. This was my proudest decorating moment in my life!! The peace of doing it myself and not dealing with angry men when things don’t work out was wonderful! I even figured out how to get the baseboards right up against the bowed wall and caulked those suckers!! Total cost was under $500!!
    So even when you’re down on yourself there are people like me thinking, “if Kristi can do it, I bet I can too” …and my next birthday is a much bigger one than yours!!!
    Thank you!!!!

  15. Oh my gosh, Kristi, what an inspiration you are. I have been stuck in that same mindset and your blog is a great reminder that that is all it is — a mindset. You’ve got this. I am so looking forward to seeing you take on this latest challenge and make it happen. Looking at all that you have accomplished, this is just another little bump in the road. And you are going to feel so empowered when it is all done! Thanks for sharing your journey with us!

  16. You go girl! You can do anything you decide to do. Just because you are 50 doesn’t matter. Those little bits of no confidence just sneak into your head and build up into a big ole’ solid wall of no confidence. I am so glad you had a meeting with yourself to get turned around. I wondered why you said you would never do drywall again the other day in your blog. I asked myself why? After all it is the lower part of the wall….not the ceiling….not high on the wall….why? Apparently you asked yourself that question at your meeting. I am glad you have turned the corner. What would you blog about if someone else finally came to your house to finish your projects? The weather?
    I am glad the slightly older Kristi is back. I’ve been missing her. Now, I’d come help you if I could, but I’m not able to. I was working in the flowerbed after church on Sunday and I fell twice. Then yesterday I picked green beans from the garden. Well, today I can barely walk/sit/move because I am so sore. Of course I’m almost 25 years older than you. I’d like to help so I will try to be a cheerleader to encourage you to move forward. I know you can do it. You might not want to, but hey, it has to be done. All us readers are excited to see that room finished with pretty cabinets and everything in place in YOUR studio. By the way, do you remember the brand, type and color number of your green paint. I just love it and I’m going to paint something, somewhere that beautiful color.

    1. I know it was a Behr color, but for the life of me, I can’t find the color name anywhere! If I come across it, I’ll make a note of it and try to remember to let you know.

  17. Oh my god of COURSE you can do it! I was wondering why you didn’t. It doesn’t even have to be great because it will be behind cabinets mostly. I LOATHE drywalling, but the torture of trying to find someone to do it is worse. I have been retired for a few years, and chunk my projects into manageable bits. And if I don’t feel like it, I don’t do anything. How do you eat an entire elephant? One bite at a time.

  18. They stay in business because they’re in demand. They’ve got more work available right now than they can do, and so they get to pick the jobs they want. My experience has been that they don’t want the small ones. That said, the lack of communication is frustrating; I hope you are leaving them reviews on various social media sites. When I hired a house painted recently I got recommendations from neighbors off of NextDoor. Then I checked references for the ones I was interested in on Yelp, Google, and the BBB. I was happy with the painting contractor I picked, and when he finished the job I left him a good review.

  19. Happy you’re realizing your power. There may be some things we legitimately have to hire out but but generally if we put our minds to it, we can do them even if they are onerous. While there are a few good handypersons out there, they are retiring and getting scarce. Friends ask why I diy instead of hiring out and the main reason is, I do a better job.

  20. It’s funny, because of all the people in this community you are absolutely the ONLY one to have had that temporary mindset. Speaking for myself, I follow you because I am in AWE over all you do by yourself. Welcome back, Superwoman!!!

  21. Same boat, we will be 53 and 63 this year and will be digging out to install French drains that will continue to the end of an acre. We’ve had crews come with fancy wheel things to determine the distance, to be later completely ghosted by them. We had one guy who wanted to change our drain project to paving stones and crushed gravel flanking our porch for 6K. 😳

    If you want it done right.. or done at all… you gotta do it yourself.

  22. To cheer you up I will tell you a story about my genius ex-husband. Yes he was incredibly intelligent but had no common sense. He was a mechanical engineer. We bought a house with a partially finished basement. The rooms were framed and drywalled on the outside but the interior of the rooms still need drywall. We decided to start with the ceiling. I held the drywall while he nailed it and then we did the mud and tape part. He put the mud part on so thick that it was 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick and of course really bumpy. He left it that way telling me that we would sand that off the next day after work. When I got home the next day I found that he had for some reason decided to paint over the stripes of hardened (unsanded) mud with high gloss paint. Not the rest of the ceiling, just the stripes of mud! Needless to say we could not chisel that paint off! And it was dark blue!! We sold the house with it still that way! Genius…ha!!

  23. I don’t know what milestone birthday you hit but I’m 55. I don’t have the time patience or skill that you do. You are an inspiration to all your readers. Be thankful you got stood up and ignored because you would not have been happy with the quality of the work. Now that is totally in your control. I know it will turn out great!!!

  24. As I was reading the beginning of your post I had one thought pop into my head about how you were feeling: Satan. Don’t let the liar get to you. Sounds like you’re on the right path.

    1. That’s exactly what I was thinking as reading thru her posts, Satan is the worst enemy to us all; he wants us to become helpless, distrust the world, give up on ourselves (a lot of people turn to Alcohol/Drugs); but we know you just needed to be reminded of your strength and that God’s Mercy is the best gift we can give ourselves. Praise God you and your Wonderful Husband are here, now and sitting in a lovely home (Paid for!YES); stock a pantry, maybe a few vegtables this winter and your homestead will become blessed to completion. As I am writing this, God is always working on us; we are not complete; so maybe we always will have a little unfinished business to focus on the most important things in life. (YOUR HOME IS MAGAZINE PERFECT)

  25. Don’t you just hate when lies overtake your mind? I’m glad that you’ve recognized their intrusion & have kicked then to the curb! You are such an inspiration & so very talented!
    Keep up the good work! Looking forward to seeing this finished project!

  26. Good for you, Kristi! Take back that mojo, and get ‘er done attitude! We ALL know you have the power to do this. And as my Mom used to always say to me, “If you want it done right, you have to do it yourself.” My mantra still to this day! Best of luck with your endeavor-

  27. Not wanting to and not being able to are two different things. I was in my 50’s when we remodeled our current home, adding a bedroom addition, including drywall. I too dislike doing drywall, with all the sanding and dust. But we’ve been enjoying our new bedroom for over 15 years now, and the drywall mess is just a memory. A dusty memory, true, but still just a memory, lol. OF COURSE you can do this! You GEAUX, girl!

  28. Good for you!!! You go girl! You have got this! And perhaps you will consider becoming a handywoman/contractor so at least there is one good one out there. ❤️

  29. Yes, we all need help at some point in our lives. But, the mind set of “I can do this” or “I will get through this” will serve you well.

    I wish you the best in everything.


  30. I live in northwest Ohio and have had similar experiences with trying to get workers to come to the house to give estimates. The most recent was for some cement work. I called 7, 2 showed up, both at times they changed…! One estimate was $6500 and the second who told us a week later was $3500. I don’t understand how they stay in business either. Have contacted several others but no one has called back! I feel your pain and frustration!

  31. Atta girl, Kristi!! Your home is a testament to what you can do. This problem with people not showing or doing a job properly is widespread, so it’s not just you. I’m glad you got your “can do” back!!

  32. Oh Kristi, I feel your pain. But good on you. Yes you can. And so can I. You are not alone with those feelings so don‘t be too hard on yourself.

  33. THAT is the Kristi we know and ADORE! Of course you CAN do it. YOU are amazing and do things I can’t imagine doing. Don’t let the Devil steal your joy!!

  34. Of course you can do this. Don’t doubt yourself anymore. Just walk through your beautiful home and look at all yu have accomplished.

  35. GO KRISTI!!! I am so proud of you sister!! 🥳 You got this girl!! The LORD is our strength…in HIM nothing is impossible

  36. Kristi! Kristi! Kristi! I know exactly what you’re talking about! What happens to us? I am working myself out of a similar situation in my personal life. I lost all of my confidence to do the things that I do best. I believe my problem was being surrounded by people who made it their mission to tear me down. I don’t know why they chose to do it, or maybe they didn’t know what they were doing, but I fell for it. I internalized everything. This went on for an extended period, but I’m working out of it, slowly by surely. We’ve just got to keep pushing!

  37. You are remarkably able. I’ve followed you blog several years now. I see what you can accomplish. But deep down you thought you couldn’t do it because you didn’t like doing it. I know you are a perfectionist but please cut yourself some slack. YOU CAN DO IT! 💪 Keep on keeping on! 🥰

  38. Kristi, what you have found with these so called workers, is exactly what is happening here, (FL) and probably all over the country. I don’t know what is wrong with people, but there is little skill, no pride in work, no business sense and not much integrity either. Thank God for my husband, as we don’t hire out much, if anything. If I had to deal with that I would have a stress attack. Believe me, I spend HOURS a day straightening out Dr. offices, insurance companies, credit card errors, just about EVERTHING now requires phone calls or follow up to get things corrected. It. Is. Unbelievable! And yes, no one follows up and the next week I start all over again. This past week we got Covid. I had issues getting my medication on time, and five days later my husband got sick too. It took at least 25 calls (with hours of listening to hold music) between the Doctor and CVS to get his medication…late, four days later…was suppose to start within 72 hours or cannot take. I gave him the last day of mine so he could start on time, and even that almost didn’t work. NO explanation from anyone for the stress I went through. I had chest pains from the sheer stress they put me through…like you, I could not understand why NO ONE can do their job anymore…why they don’t follow up…why they do NOT care. Someone said that the Pandemic also caused great stupidity besides all the other negatives. Maybe they are correct. I am so happy that although you hate that phase of work, you will be doing it yourself…and I AM SO HAPPY FOR YOU. One less thing to fight, in a world where we are now fighting our way through everyday. At the very least you do NOT have to call anymore clueless duds and it will be done right! Even if you do a little at a time…it will be done!

  39. Kristi, I read your post, then felt your disappointment, and had a mini pity-party for you, along with tears of frustration.

    When ‘professional’ people fail to keep their word, it is disheartening. It is also stupid because it damages their reputation. I could bend your ear/eye(s) and tell you the sad story of what happens in Ecuador, but I will spare you the time and the effort. Commitment can be a foreign word to many “maestros” (the boss of the project) yep, that is what they are called. Some deserve the designation; others clearly do not. Builders often take shortcuts, sometimes use inferior products and later the resident faces the ‘surprise.’ I have a good landlady who is prompt in ordering repairs but she tends to be a sucker when she follows whatever her maestro tells her is best.

    So, as to the project at hand for you: it is clear it is not a matter of you not knowing how to do it. You’ve just had your fill of it. It is a matter of not wanting to do it. Totally understandable to me. But, you have ended your search for hired help for this project, and so, with this turn of events, you are going to forge ahead and do it yourself. Like all you do, you will do it well and then it will be a done deal. Onward, press on to the fun stuff.

    Thank you for your forthrightness in sharing your feelings. I believe the comments reflect how much we admire the courage you show to all of us who note your fortitude and diligence. You may have done more to inspire us than you will ever know, whatever thing each of us may take from the lesson you learned and shared.

  40. I am so grateful you are capable and so angry that people get treated as though they don’t matter. Many of us are not capable, so we wait and wait and get inferior work done at outrageous prices. I wish there were some redress, but I have no idea what it is. I know your work will turn out just as you want it to. I am happy for you.

  41. Hear! Hear!

    I’m glad you were able to channel your frustration into action. Your renovations are inspiring lots of people to attempt doing what we were told we couldn’t do.
    As for tradesmen….I’ve owned multiple houses in the past 30 years and I can count the number of reliable tradies on one hand with fingers to spare!

  42. I admire you so much for doing things I tell myself I can’t do. But YOU do them. Yours is the only blog I follow! You’ll get it done.

  43. I read your blog because you help me believe that if you can do it, I can. Or I at least should try. 🙂 People not showing up makes me crazy! I understand your frustration, but you at least can do this yourself and do it beautifully! We’ve all seen the results. Thanks for your transparency. I pray you awake tomorrow remembering His mercies are new every morning. Persevere!!!

  44. Do you hate doing drywall more than you hate waiting on handymen who don’t show up or don’t do what they have promised? 😉 I think the answer is obviously “no”! A good handyman is worth their weight in gold. Until I find one, I’m going to have to do it by myself. And it has never been easier for an old lady like me to do these tasks: everything I’ve needed to do so far I’ve been able to find videos and how-to’s online. And I get my inspiration from you!!! In fact, when you’re looking for a blog post idea, I wish you’d share some of your tricks and tips for doing the bigger jobs on your own. I’m sure I’m not the only one who would get a lot out of that!

  45. Same here-they don’t call back. don’t show, don’t follow the timelines they have given you. It is so frustrating. So rare when it all goes well. Wish I could have done my job this poorly.

  46. Honestly, I blame the scamdemic for the feelings of isolation and despair. Life is not the same as it was in the 2010s. I’m thankful you have your church friends to bolster you. Hold them close. Focus on the Lord. Let Him be your strength.

  47. Good for you for recognizing what was happening and snapping yourself out of it!! Now get those walls done and move on to the next step finishing your studio! Then take a sigh of relief knowing you always had the power and capability once you are sitting in your finished studio at your desk smiling at your masterpiece of a home!!

  48. I know the frustration of waiting and counting on others to help you, even when you’d be paying for their service.

    I’m a bit older than you, almost 65, was in a car accident a couple years ago, broke my neck C5-6, and lumbar 1-5, so that has slowed me down a bit.
    I still catch myself trying to do things I know I shouldn’t, I had always treated my body like a mule, and that’s been a hard habit to break, just had to learn to do things differently.

    Be careful you don’t hurt yourself lifting and carrying.

  49. all the negative has made you realize that 1) you are capable of doing anything that needs doing and 2) in this instance you just preferred to outsource the job.

    The problem is; tradesmen will not do small jobs any more….

  50. I love your frank honesty! It sounds like you dodged a few bullets with those unreliable faux workers! I’m guessing this awakening might never have dawned had they been diligent. You had sound reasoning when you made the choice to hire out- ( at least I thought so) and they failed you. Its not an easy to accept that your faith in humanity has been misplaced, especially in your profession, of which you are so proud! You certainly didn’t waste your time while processing this dilemma! So your forward momentum continues and you have the added bonus of wisdom gained by tough experience- which comes with this magical age you have tallied behind you!

    Your hard earned wisdom is a real alarm bell for me too! I pray I face it and advance through it with the grit and determination you employed and get myself going!

    Thank you for this blog!

  51. I have watched you achieve such beauty in your home. You HAVE got this and I am as proud as if you are one of mine to see you find yourself again. You go get it sweetheart.

  52. I hated dry walling too until I found Master of Plaster (and no, I make no money from this, I just love the product!). I have done two entire rooms with it and there is NO DUST!!!! It is self leveling and has a base coat and a finish coat, and the website discusses different finishes. So, go dustless this time! GOOD LUCK!!!

  53. Your post was so motivating, inspiring and encouraging! All workmanship and renovating you have done has been incredible. You have skills many of us dream about having. Your story makes it cleat that we all can learn new skills and do things we only dream about. Your home is beautiful and your stories so enjoyable to read. You are an inspiration! I do totally agree with all the unreliable handymen out there! We have experienced this same treatment and you do wonder how they stay in business. We never grew up witnessing this mentality and work ethic. Very concerning for our society. But you won in the end! Way to go!

  54. GOOD FOR YOU!!! When you get the drywall put up and the project finished I think you should take a picture of your work and text it to everyone of those people that stood you up and let them know you don’t need their help after all!

  55. You got this. It’s inspiring me to tackle my own sheet rock & mud job.

    Also I don’t know if saw this piece in the Washington Post but given your recent blogs about DIY’ing a home you love, the Waco “castle”, and more but I think you will find it interesting. The comments to the piece equally interesting. A common complaint HGTV doesn’t teach actual skills anymore. Well you cover that in stripes.

    If you can’t open it, let me know.

  56. You’re a hero. More people love and admire you than you will ever know. Strong and true, you.

  57. Kristi,l know the feeling you’re going through. I’ve been repairing damage renters did to my house for going on 3 years. Its my house,garage,and a separate apartment that i haven’t touched. I did it all alone. Im not done, but l rest for days of quilting or art. It gets overwhelming.
    Don’t beat yourself up.. even super woman gets discouraged now and then. Please just ignore your age. Its only a number and your body is healthy snd strong. I’m close to 74. Soon as the weather here in Southern Louisiana cools down im going to replace the leaking metal roof on my screened porch. Im going go do it alone because everyone has been too busy with their own work. If i lived closer I’d help you. I really like doing sheetrock!
    Take a tour of your house and be proud of all you have done. Your age is a cronological number. It has nothing to do with how strong and how healthy your body is. Keep the faith in yourself. We all get down once in a while. You have it in you to keep going!

  58. Have you called your last drywall contractor to do the job? When we had our basement finished, I served as the project manager. I went to a drywall company to price drywall. They were very nice but wanted to know why a consumer had come in as they usually work with contractors. When I explained we were finishing our basement and i was the project manager, I was asked if I had a drywall person to do the drywall. I said no…and they referred me. Turned out this referral worked for a well known home builder and he not only agreed to do our drywall, but he referred me to a framer, door and trim man, and a painter. It was an interesting experience as the door and trim guy doesn’t fill the nail holes, the painter does that work. I tell you this story because calling a drywall resource for builders might be a great place to get a referral to a reliable drywaller. There is someone out there who is good and reliable.

  59. I must admit I read the opening to your blogpost and stopped and went straight to comments. I suggested to call a drywall resource outside the big box stores for a referral to a drywaller. Then I went back and read your post in full. I LOVED IT! Yes you are good, capable and strong! And I’m happy to see you take charge and get her done! This drywall fix I know will look fantastic but you are going to cover it up with cabinets and wall paper. You Can DO IT Kristy!!

  60. Good for you Kristi. As a 78 year old woman who in my past did everything for myself…I understand the feeling of hopelessness. I hardly ever had a man to do things for me and not very much money either…but lots of children 🙂 . I did not have the luxury of self pity. Now at 78 I have to hire anything needing done. And like you I cannot find people to do this for me. So the frustration of undone things makes me depressed….for a while and then I finally get to the acceptance of the undone and go on with living. I am so happy for you in that you can do these things you need done and I know the satisfaction of those done jobs will only make for a happier life. So congratulations on this new mindset!

  61. I don’t know your age so I do not want to insult you. Could the change in attitude be hormonal . I was 47 when I went through menopause naturally and that was the first time in my life that I ever got emotional over what I considered defeat or ever doubted my capabilities to conquer any project. Even pre menopause or just an imbalance of hormones can make us emotional. I’m not saying to take hormones just give yourself some slack for something you may not be able to control. I was thinking you are around 40 so really did not want to insult you with a menopause comment. Sorry also because I know this is not a ladies only thread but did not know how else to comment. As you say have a good cry then pull up your boots and eat this elephant one bite at a time.

    1. I am 73 and broke down and called a painter yesterday to paint my eaves because I just can’t take this Louisiana heat. After cleaning and taking down gutters I was convinced.

    2. Cynthia, I think you could be right. (She turned 50) I remember when I was around 47, the store I worked at was closing, and we kept getting different managers as they were quitting before being out of work, and going elsewhere. One manager clearly had a problem with me from the minute he met me, and one night as I was closing the store, I’d had it. I did my paperwork and wrote a note saying he could take this job and shove it (yep, I did!) and told him the stores keys were hidden outside (I won’t say where here!) As soon as I got home, I wondered what did I do??? I never would have done that ever before! I later realized it was probably a menopause moment, but it was too late, and besides, I ended up feeling glad I’d left at that point. Menopause can make you crazy, and I was not fun to be around in that time! Not saying this is Kristi’s issue, but it could be (or it could be the heat wave there too!)

  62. Go girl! I’ve been following you for years, you are incredibly amazing, talented & strong! 💪

  63. Just like the little engine that could; I think I can, I think I can, I think I can; …cause we know you can do this! My husband does most of our work and we are aged 68 & 70; He gets extremely tired sometimes doing the smaller jobs we now perform (no MORE big jobs); but he knows, knows, knows, no one can do the job as well as he can; so he like you was disappointed in so many past experiences with Handy Men, or remodelers, we don’t even try. We put down a bamboo wood floor in our entre basement 3 years ago; and part of our upstairs, we took our time, and stopped at 5:00; taking lunch breaks. If anything happens to him before me; I would have to move to get what I want; no more Kitchen renovations, no more major bath renos, just painting, and up keep. You are incredible, but SLOW down a bit.

  64. I know how you felt. I physically can no longer garden, not even to prune shrubs or plant a flower. My back and knees are shot, I have no more muscle tone, and this all came on about 4 years ago. I’ll be 70 in January, and hate not being able anymore! I still try, but I get frustrated. So I’m trying instead to see if I can get stronger, and maybe next spring I will be able bodied again! I really couldn’t see why you did not want to do the drywall, since it was not a job using full sheets (except to cut them down). If I had been ghosted by that many people, I would have jumped on it, even if it took me longer than it would them! I too hate hanging drywall, but by golly, sometimes you need to do the annoying things unless you want to waste time. Also, is there not one soul in your church who could have done drywall? I would be surprised if there weren’t!

  65. What a wonderful post for all of us to read. At 65 I started telling myself the same thing, plus I could higher things down and we do have a readily available talent pool where I live. But I could save so much money by just tackling some things myself. I really enjoyed this post and benefited from it, thank you!

  66. So proud of you! I kept wondering why YOU were calling people for help except that maybe you were tired (I get that!). I’ve followed you for years and am amazed every day at what you can and have done. You truly have inspired me to get my own house renovations done and I feel like a slug compared to you. You’ve got this, girl!

  67. You have obviously forgotten your grandmother standing on the cabinets/ladder during one of your projects. She never would have said, “I can’t,” and I’m glad you revenge I CAN DO ANYTHING (if I want to).

  68. Catching up after a week away…so glad to see this post! I read the last post and thought “Kristi, you can knock out that drywall quickly”. There is a freedom in being able to say “I don’t WANT to do drywall, so I’ll hire it out” but that doesn’t mean you HAVE to hire it out. Especially if you can’t find anyone to hire it to! Glad you were able to recognize that you were telling yourself lies, it’s scary how they can creep in without us noticing!

  69. I love this!! You certainly have proven that you can do whatever you put your mind to.

    I don’t know if they have Angi in your area (I think it’s I’ve had really good luck getting estimates and small jobs done through them. There are reviews on the site and while I’m sure they are not 100% reliable it does give some accountability. Maybe worth a try?

  70. Hello Kristi,
    I have followed you for years, and feel as if I know you. I suppose I do. You have just no idea who I am, lol. Your work is amazing! You are accomplished and capable. And your determination allows you to achieve great things. But I warn you, you are beating your body up with all of this. Years ago I did much the same things, and I loved it. I could see my dream complete before I left for the hardware. It was an amazing experience, and something I will always cherish.
    But years later, I am paying for that privilege. I really beat up my body. Both of my knees are shot from all the physical force I put them through. And they hurt.
    I am not trying to discourage you. Far from it. Just take care of your body while you are doing all of this. Live your experiences and appreciate your amazing abilities. I just warn you, as someone who’s been there-take care of your body. You can have lots of houses. You only get one body.
    Continuing to cheer you on from afar. I’m just sorry I will never be able to meet you in person. I’d love to buy you lunch.
    Zeita Reed