Challenge Accepted

When you first go into a relationship you need to hit all those major milestones. First kiss, first I love you. The next big step is moving in together and with that comes the first challenge. Yep! The dreaded building of Ikea furniture. You fight, throw things and at the end feel all excited that you accomplished it together. As the relationship moves forward tasks get more divided. For instance, in our house there were certain jobs I decided I couldn’t do. Change a light bulb; cook a BBQ, mow the lawn, put together furniture and toys. The ‘man’ jobs as my dad would say.

After 9 years I became pretty good at relying on someone else to do those man jobs.  Then all of a sudden in the blink of an eye he’s gone and I’m left here wondering who the hell will change the down light in the toilet that’s been blown for a month now. 

After a recent flood in our master bedroom and losing our stuff, we were sleeping on just a mattress on the floor. After months I thought it was time to buy a new bed and Incy Interiors were having a sale. I got an absolute bargain. It arrived and I was excited. I opened the door to see two very long, very huge boxes left there. This left me with a few challenges; the first, how do I get these boxes inside and the second, how on earth do I put this together alone.

For those that don’t know me, we don’t have family in Sydney. My mum and dad are in Canberra and his parents are from Young in country NSW. Although I have amazing friends with amazing husbands, who would have gladly come to help, I’m a here and now kind of girl and it was here so the time was now to put it together. 

I opened the boxes out the front and carried each pole and slat into the bedroom. Wait, did I mention this bed I bought was a four poster king sized bed. Yep, that’s 12 side poles and 16 small bottoms slats, a million screws and 2 different sized Allen keys. I moved my mattress up against the wall and started building.  I used a ladder to support the sides that I couldn’t hold and managed to get something that resembled a frame to stand up. I very cleverly attached the Allen key into my drill head and used that to tighten all the bolts. Super clever thinking I thought? I had one small hiccup when trying to stand the bed frame upright and realised my ceiling fan was in the way. I had to undo 2 posts to turn it but I managed. All up it only took me 3 hours to figure out the instructions and put it together (not bad).

As I dragged my very heavy king mattress onto the frame and made the bed with my fresh new sheets, I stood back and I felt proud. Yes, I could have saved a lot of time and hired someone to do it but where’s the satisfaction in that? That night the girls and I got into that bed with pure joy at what I had achieved on my own. I felt a little worried it may collapse on the girls, so not much sleep was had that night. But we were ok and it’s still standing. In fact I LOVE it.  It’s mine, I made it and it represented a new part of me. A strong me who can do all the ‘man’ jobs, without the man.

The toilet light on the other hand is still blown and no matter how many YouTube clips I watch it’s not happening.


19 thoughts on “Challenge Accepted

  1. Yep ive learnt to do it without the man i had around for 17 years that did all those jobs. I mow lawns, replace light bulbs, fix broken water pipes, i had to climb in the roof at christmas to get the christmas tree down for the kids even though i felt like crap and preferred to miss christmas. I was told i would need a mans help for that but i proved him wrong i got up there got the tree and decorations and completed many more tasks ive been told i cant and it makes me feel strong and independant again, like i was before i met my ex husband. Keep going, you are doing great!


    1. Sounded a bit like me, would of preferred to skip Christmas! Well done to getting the tree down and I bet your children had an amazing day with you! Thanks for you msg xx


  2. Love your post and I totally get it!! I too ended up with ‘his’ list and my list of chores -of which building furniture was not on mine, neither were light bulbs, fuses, ladders etc.
    Well guess what – challenge accepted and I have put together a table, changed light globes, visited the fuse box on numerous occasions and the list goes on!!!
    Thanks for sharing and on this International Women’s Day – I’m happy to say we can do anything we put our minds too!


  3. Great job ! Such an example for the girls too !! You’ll feel stronger every day and the flip side is you get to do things the way you want to without having to negotiate with anyone. 😊


  4. I’m very pleased to read this. Women do ALL the lifting ALL of the time. Whether it be furniture construction or toilet roll change over 🙄
    The only difference I think is that we have so much on our plate all of the time we choose to delegate some of the more time consuming things.
    Can we do them? Yes of course.
    Can we be bothered? Not at the moment.
    (A bit like the toilet paper roll for men!)

    Ps: I built a temporary sewer line this week after the pool digger smashed it. A trip to Reece & a 6m length of 100mm, 2x 45 elbows and 2x grommets I was in action.

    My cheater ex-husband was a plumber.
    I think building the sewer (in front of the pool builders) was one of the most liberating things I’ve ever done. I knew a plumber would charge me like a wounded bull.
    So I got something out of that marriage I suppose! 😏
    Keep going Mel!
    If you need a sewer line diverted – holler!


  5. You’ve got this Mel.
    (I say whilst staring at the 4 rolls of kmart contact i bought 3 weeks ago to refresh our hand me down furniture). As you said, some things become so incredibly overwelming to even tackle, and others just seem to eventually become the norm. Each day and each task at a time.

    Ps congrats on the blog.


  6. Great job!!! Women are so much stronger than given credit for and although i’m not in the same situation as yourself, i’m single by choice, a breast cancer survivor who cannot bare to have a man criticise my battered, bruised and scared chest as they favour something that is perfect. Womens chests are so important to men and having just come out of a relationship prior to my diagnosis I am doing all the things i would normally have gotten the ‘male’ to do. I have taught myself so much and find real joy is making and creating and fixing things that once i needed a man to fix for me.
    My only advice? He earns millions, make sure you get some – spiteful yes, but you and your beautiful girls did not ask to be abandoned and although this change in your life will make and create a better ‘you’ you still deserve it all.
    Go get it!!!!


  7. I remember doing the same myself. Buying the bed frame, having it delivered, fiddling with the heavy frames & Allen keys, heaving the mattress and tucking the sheets in. It is a horrible experience, having someone you loved, turn out to be completely different than what you thought they’d be…. but don’t lose faith it you. Because if you don’t love and protect yourself, it’ll end up hurting you and others who rely and love you.
    Sending you positive vibes and golden energy. There does come a day when you are no longer pained by it, but rather happier for it. Promise xx


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