A Valentine’s Day Down the Drain

It was a Valentine’s Day we will remember for all the wrong reasons.

I started writing this from a Hilton Hotel this morning, but not because hubby and I had planned a romantic getaway. After I took a bath last night the tub drained as usual until it got about half way done. All of a sudden it simply stopped and wouldn’t budge no matter what hubby tried to do. Next thing we knew the toilets wouldn’t drain…not any of the three in the house. Hubby went to look at the hot water heater and saw water all over the floor in the mechanical room. We called our friend from church who is a plumber. Thank you Lord for creating such good people!

The back story is that about 10 months ago Suddenlink, the only cable company for our town, put a cable in our backyard and left it laying there until yesterday. A contracted company came out two weeks ago to do the initial digging before the cable could be buried. Despite spray paint all over the grass painted here and striped there marking the lines, they still managed to bore through the main sewer line going out from our house. Our plumber friend figured this out in the pitch black last night in sub-zero weather–how the contractors doing the work in the middle of the day didn’t notice their blunder is beyond me.

Yep, that sucker is b-r-o-k-e-n.
The red tube is the cable they buried yesterday. They couldn’t have hit the middle of the sewer line any better even if they were aiming for it!
You can see the shattered pieces of the sewer line interspersed among the muck they shoveled out of the hole they dug.

Hubby tried to call Suddenlink last night to tell them about our emergency, but ended up on the line with someone in who-knows-where who was not only completely unable to help but also nearly impossible to understand. One of the significant difficulties my MS has created over the years is a severely dysfunctional bladder. No running water left us with little choice but to get a hotel room around 11:00 last night.

Several phone calls this morning and a sprinkling of “No, this needs to be taken care of today so let me speak to your supervisor, please”-es later, and with our plumber supervising the contractor operating a backhoe who made the mess in the first place, and VOILA, we can flush and run water again.

I guess it’s good this happened before and not after we close on our current home in just a couple of weeks. The buyers, not knowing about the cable fiasco, could have thought we were perfectly happy selling them a lemon.

As for my MS, in case you were wondering how the effects of the work and accompanying stress invariably associated with moving has affected me, I can tell you that it hasn’t been pretty. Layering major plumbing issues that required a backhoe to dig up half of the front yard has not really helped the situation much. Random painful muscle spasms, difficulty walking, extreme fatigue, poor coordination, tingling extremities, and incontinence have become more frequent than I care to admit.

To balance all of this out though, today is a day of much gratitude because it marks exactly one year since I retired from all work. There is no way I could have continued working even a few hours each week. Adding to the excitement, the first full dose of my new MS disease modifying drug Ocrevus is less than two weeks away, just three days after our move to the new house. I’m not sure how my typically boring, run of the mill life has turned into the beginnings of a pretty good sitcom plot, but I’m happy that hubby and I have been cast together and can find some humor to laugh at this, our crazy life.