Life In My Parents Pool House

So if I die I want that to be the name of my memoir. Isn’t is perfect? It’s funny yet sadly true. A sick girl-turned-woman living in her parents pool house and on their dime. With a dog. Wait am I a girl or a woman? Now I know how Britney Spears felt when she sang that song. In any case, it sounds like a Fairytale to me. I wonder how this one ends.

What I’m really getting at is that life in my parent’s pool house is great and I recommend that all 28 year olds or young adults in general try it. I had my first night in my new place three days ago. Waking up the next morning in my bed, in my own house was basically spectacular. You have to understand it’s been 2.3 years since I’ve been able to wake up under those parameters and having to wait so long and go through what I did has made the moment even sweeter. If felt like finally exhaling after a ridiculously long tunnel. I laid in bed for the next hour with a pure feeling of gratitude, and that’s all I can really do in these instances. Breath, reflect, take it in and give thanks. If you don’t they pass you by, and you find yourself years later realizing how good you had it only in retrospect. I realize how lucky I am to live in a beautiful house, to call it my own, to have a pool, and to be given help and time to heal, when my givers know I can’t really pay it back. I guess that’s what you call love isn’t it. Did I mention Monty loves it too? He’s also deathly afraid of the polaris but not enough to stay out of the pool.


Moving into a house when you’re a sickly takes a very long time. Also having this month-long headache still isn’t helping, but who’s counting? I was overeager in the beginning. I wanted to set up every room and unpack every box and start painting walls all on the first day. It took a little overdoing and paying the price later to realize OK, this needs to happen one room at a time. Sometimes one piece of furniture at a time. And mostly one drawer at a time. It’s ridiculous to me how many times I have to learn that lesson. That overdoing it will be costly and painful, and yet I continue to overdo it and pay the price. And the funny thing is, most people I speak to with this illness (like my mom and everyone at the support group) say they do it constantly. You’d think we’d learn after all these years. We’re a bunch of stubborn dum dums!

Anyway I think the most exceptional part about living by yourself is the amount of time you can spend without pants. Like that first day, after I spent the hour of gratitude in bed, I got dressed and began unpacking and organizing and having these grand fantasies in my head like “And in this room I’ll have scrabble tournaments and in this room I’ll serve afternoon tea.” All of which will probably never happen. After a while my pants were really beginning to bother me. Don’t ask why–sometimes it’s noises and sometimes it’s clothing. And then it struck me that I could take my pants off and keep unpacking because THIS WAS MY HOUSE and at my house PANTS ARE NOT REQUIRED. So I took them off and unpacked in my underwear and soaked up the amazing feeling of being able to do what I want in my own place because I make the rules now. Yeah! Other rules include:

  1. No Bill O’Reilly (Not even an option because I’m poor and don’t have cable but still)
  2. Peeing in the Pool Is Actually Allowed. I know you’re going to do it anyway and come on, we use strong chemicals in there.
  3. No guns.
  4. All dogs allowed! In fact, no humans without dogs.
  5. What happens at the pool house stays at the pool house. Like swimming. And scrabble.

So basically, there are no rules. I just want it to be a happy place and an open door to the people I love. I can’t guarantee I’ll be wearing pants, but hey the world has bigger fish to fry. This other cool thing happened while I was touching up paint the first day. I found my ipod from like 5 years ago and thought I’d play songs on random and be entertained from my 5-year-old playlists. The first song that came on was “Let It Be” by The Beatles and I totally stopped what I was doing and belted that song as loud as I could. I’ve heard it so many times before, but suddenly all the words felt like they were being sung just to me and my life. The lyric that really spoke to me was There Will Be An Answer. Because there will be. One day. Maybe not for many many years, maybe not even in this life on earth, but we will see what our lives mean in the grander scheme of things and we will get an answer to our pain and sorrow. I dream about that moment of clarity and revelation all the time. In the meantime, we just have to hang on. Pick up the pieces. Keep going.

Anyway, I played that song about 6 more times really really loudly and sang it really really loudly because that’s another rule: You can sing as loud as you want. Standing in the kitchen. In your underwear. In fact I recommend that’s how you do it. So below is the song Let It Be and I suggest you play it and belt it and let those words remind you that everything is OK. Even though, I know it’s not. My life is a mess. The world is a mess. I watch the news and I see it. I see war and poverty and violence and corruption and it all makes me feel very small. Very powerless. All I am is a sick kid who calls it a success if I take a shower frequently enough. But it reminds me of a quote from Joseph Campbell. He says:

“When we talk about settling the world’s problems, we’re barking up the wrong tree. The world is perfect. It’s a mess. It has always been a mess. We are not going to change it. Our job is to straighten out our own lives.”

It’s not the most romantic theory about life, but it can be reassuring. When I think about what the world has evolved from, (think even from the Civil Rights Movement to present day) it gives me hope that we will continue to grow. It’s all going to be OK. We’re here. We’re awakening. We’ve survived this much, and that’s what we’ll continue to do.

Health, Happiness, Pants.

14 thoughts on “Life In My Parents Pool House

  1. I’m still learning from you, while I’m trying to reach my goals. I absolutely liked reading everything that is written on your website.Keep the information coming. I enjoyed it!


  2. a “real tiny efficiency apartment”, or a “cajun shack with a borrowed pool” sounds > “pool house”. eww


    signed: daddy warbucks

    On Mon, Apr 8, 2013 at 11:45 PM, Fibromy-Awesome wrote:

    > ** > Mary Gelpi posted: “So if I die I want that to be the name of my > memoir. Isnt is perfect? Its funny yet sadly true. A sick > girl-turned-woman living in her parents pool house and on their dime. With > a dog. Wait am I a girl or a woman? Now I know how Britney Spears felt > when”


  3. I am pleased to nominate you for The Liebster Award!!!

    The Liebster award is given to up and coming bloggers to encourage them to continue their work. What is a Liebster? The meaning: Liebster is German and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome. I received this nomination from I am humbled and honored to have been nominated.

    Thanks for the nomination Simply Me Just Be. . .

    To receive this award you must go to and follow the instructions on the blog post “What Wonder Comes When We Least Expect”.

    Congratulations and May you be blessed!
    Sandy Ozanich


  4. Hi Mary! I just wanted to say that you’re kind of awesome. Kind of a lot awesome. I have been following your blog intermittently for almost two years now and there’s just something about you that never fails to entertain and inspire me. I really enjoy hearing your perspectives on life, both the good and the bad. This post is no exception! Also, it’s possible that I like this post so much because I live in Alaska and am jealous that you have a. a pool, b. warm weather (we just had a random raging snowfall so our “spring” now looks like Christmas) and c. no pants on. I am highly aware of my pant-on-ness now.

    But yeah. I never comment on your posts, but I read a LOT of them. Perhaps all of them. It’s really quite rude that I just read them and say nothing. It’s wisdom thievery, surely. I suspect that there are many like me who just don’t take the time to thank you for your awesomeness (have I mentioned the awesomeness already?) so on all of our behalf (our behalves?), I apologize.

    Stay awesome and give Monty some belly rubs from me!
    -Jasmine in Anchorage, Alaska


  5. In spain we have this saying which its litteral translation is something like ‘girls with straight hair, always want it curly” and viceversa, meaning that we value what we do not have. Reading your blog i was thinking that some people (may be most of) dedicate all their lives, time and energy to get a house like the one you just got, and maybe in some cases with no pool and no garden. Working late hours with No tme for friends, or dogs, or read, or listent to music, to think about life…probably this is a extreme case, but you know where i am going, right? I believe you are doing something very valuable with your time and how you share your discoveries is helping, and will help people. Internet is a great mean to do a lot of things! As a girl, as a woman, with pants or with no pants ;). Thanks for youe blog. Lara


  6. Really enjoying reading your blog posts, Mary! I love the rules for your house, especially the dog one! :) Also, I can relate to the iPod… I found mine last week and have been listening to it nonstop. It has been dubbed “nostalgia iPod.” I hope you have a good rest of the week and that you take your time finishing your new (and old) place.


  7. I’m so happy for you finally having a place to put down roots. It had to be hard bouncing from one place to another. Enjoy all the time you have there and swim a lot for me. If I had a pool I’d be there all the time.
    I am trying to pick myself up out of a fibro fog that’s been going on for most of the winter. I even adopted a kitten about 4 weeks ago. He helps lighten the mood but makes more work for me as well.
    Keep posting and keep your chin up. Love what you write.


  8. I am so chuffed for you poppet, it really must feel fantastic to have control of your life again even if its no pants and belting out Let it Be. As you say give thanks, you have your dog and the pool and while we are living there is hope.
    Gentle hugs


  9. Congrats on your new (and awesome!) digs! As a fellow 28-year old sickly who just gave up my own apartment and am now living off my family and sleeping in guest bedrooms’ for an undetermined amount of time, I’m feeling pretty crappy about life. But your blog always makes me smile and laugh, and even though I don’t know you, I love that your entries are like my thoughts and feelings put to words.

    So I just finished up the first stop of my homeless itinerary, which was 3 weeks at my mom’s place. Later today I fly to a friend’s apt in NC for a week, then to my brother’s house in LA for a month, then to a weekend medical convention in VA, a different friend’s apartment in MD for a week, and finally to my aunt’s beach house in CT for a week or two. That’s all I’ve got for now, but at that point I’ll probably just start again from the beginning.


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