Ever have one of those days – or maybe weeks – or even months – when everything seems to be falling apart and going to ‘hell’ in a hand-basket?  Well I’ve just had a few weeks like that – and it wasn’t much fun!

My plan had been  to post on spring and the joy of mud once the Easter Weekend was over, however in this case I guess making a plan just gave the Universe something to laugh at since I woke up the day before Good Friday to discover about 2 inches of water in my basement and an inoperable furnace.  It also meant no hot water since I had an oil-fired hot water tank.  Quickly figured out that during the night my sump pump had failed – and when you live in the country with no city sewers or water, everything like that is your own responsibility.

So, 1st order of business was to see if I could get the sump pump going (which I did) and then bring in an additional submersible pump to remove the water faster.  Next, call the furnace people. I actually had all the water out before the furnace chap arrived and had started on removing everything that had been on the floor and damaged by water.

The bad news – seems the oil-fired hot water tank which they had put right beside the sump well, without a supporting pad, is highly susceptible to water  damage.  Bottom line – a three year old furnace (which had replaced a 7 year old one which had sprung a leak) was going to have to be replaced because although only one part was damaged, the whole unit was declared a right-off! The human race has become so wasteful! Oh, and the sump pump stopped again that afternoon and I couldn’t get it started – but I had a brand new back-up sitting in the wings – so just had to switch them!

Then I discovered that I was not covered by insurance – it seems because of two small claims for water damage, that didn’t even happen in my house, all future water damage insurance for my home was cancelled for as long as I shall live (be warned – unless damage is very high – don’t waste one of your only 2 allowed claims!)!

Of course the long Easter weekend complicated things and it was a full 12 and a half days before I had any heat or hot water in the house.  And although the previous 2 weeks had been abnormally mild, Mother Nature, bless her soul, decided we needed more cold weather, so the temperature dropped to below zero every day and night during that period!

Now you may be asking yourself ‘what bright side?’ right about now. And, it’s true, things looked pretty bleak, and still could if I chose to look at all the negatives aspects of my mini disaster.

But I’ve always been a ‘glass half full with room for more’ sort of person and know that dwelling on the negatives doesn’t do a thing to make me feel better or improve the situation.  And two of my favorite sayings are ‘it could have been worse’, and ‘this too shall pass’.  And it could have been worse.  Almost everything in the basement was up on shelving (except for boxes I’d been moving around as I sorted to discard – but now the decision to discard was made so much easier!) and I had a back-up sump pump ready when mine failed again.  And since I still had power I could boil water and eat hot meals.  I also hadn’t packed away my winter sweaters, so I just kept adding one as the house got colder. And once the HVAC company had all the paperwork in place I had hot water and heat in less than 24 hours!

And I am so grateful that I live in a country where heat and hot water are the norm, rather than the exception.  I think too often we take for granted so many of the things that make our lives better. And rather than dwelling on what we don’t have or what’s wrong or not working in our lives, we should look for what is working, what we have to be grateful for each day. Looking on the bright side of things won’t make the bad go away, however it will put you in a better frame of mind to deal with them

Of course I now have a huge unexpected bill that was definitely not budgeted for – but it could have been worse. It wasn’t like it was a tornado, I didn’t lose the roof over my head or all my possessions! And I am very grateful for that.

So there’s always a bright side – if nothing else – be grateful that you’re alive and look for even one small thing you smile about, that makes you happy.


So until the next time, THRIVE on  😀







Karen Switzer-Howse

Canada’s Premier ThriveSynergy Strategist

©2016 K.D. Switzer-Howse