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My complicated relationship with BOB

Monday, April 05, 2021

As I'm writing this, I'm relinquishing control to the automatic floor sweeper AKA BOBsweep. it's a poor person's version of a ROOMBA that I bought several years ago on sale at Target. When I first got it, I was so excited. No more cleaning up the floor! No more cat hair and crumbs! Boy was I wrong.

I'm sure it's me, not him. But it doesn't exactly work perfectly; because that would mean he would clean around all of the crap on the floor without me having to pick it up. He wouldn't get caught underneath the kitchen cabinets and stop, signaling an error message. He would go exactly in the pattern I wanted him to go.

When I first got this thing, I would watch - fascinated. And then irritated. Why was it going in that direction? Why not just go back and forth? Apparently, there is some logic to the way he sweeps. And it wasn't MY WAY.

But recently, I've let him have his way with my floors. It's not perfect. He stalls out some, especially on rugs. But like a lot of things, it helps to let go a bit. He does a pretty good job of getting cat hair and dust, and definitely better than doing nothing.

When I was going through my first week of radiation, I was so frustrated and tired and just DIDN'T WANT TO DO IT. When I met with my doctor at the end of the second week, he made a comment about us wanting control, when we really have none. I thought it was pretty insightful for a doctor. But I suppose for an oncologist, he's seen how little control he really has in some cases.

I know this, most of the time. But it's hard to acknowledge, when we are facing cancer, disease, aging, grief, many of the hard things in life as well as some of the easy ones. Who knows why things happen to us, good or bad. I never felt "why me" when I was told I had cancer. Why not me? Both of my sisters have had cancer. My mom had dementia at an early age, and lived a long time with that cruel illness. We recently had an outdoor happy hour with our neighbor, the one I've been shopping for during COVID. She and Ken are both fully vaccinated, I'm one shot in. We still distanced and stayed outside, the weather has been great. It was nice to get to know her better and we learned she had lost two children to an unknown causes, attributed ultimately to a strange virus. She has two adult daughters and is close to them. But again, why her? She doesn't dwell on it and has had a good life (by her account).

So that's my ramble today. Bob has gone quiet in the bedroom and that often means he needs help so I'd better go lend a human hand to the machine. Have a good week, and thanks for reading.

Here's the Bobsweep! www.bobsweep.com
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Hello old friend,
    I stumbled upon your blog by "following the breadcrumbs"
    You know, comment on a blog, see a name you remember and come over to see how she is doing.

    We have a real ROOMBA that we named "Dustin"
    It works quite well actually, or maybe I should say it does as good a job as I usually do. LOL

    You have written a serious, honest, realistic and also hopeful blog.

    You have a great perspective which will serve you well.

    Take care of yourself

    17 days ago
    Love all the Bob stories! Mine just died and I am in mourning! Yes, it wasn't perfect but boy, it helped in the day to day!

    This is such a wonderfully written blog! I hope it goes viral as it is so inspiring. Yes, there are many things we cannot control but we need to move on in spite of them--I don't know how others do it so successfully. How do you move your laser-focus away from the things that threaten?

    Finally, I would like to offer the following to inspire those with cancer:Follow your expert doctor's advice but also be aware of some positive, natural things you can do yourself.

    Beating breast cancer:


    Beating stage 3 colon cancer:

    31 days ago
    Well first, I love my Roomba, I call it Kracken and tell Alexa to release the Kracken when I want to start cleaning. Mostly it's fun to get messages when Kracken is stuck and I get things like "Kracken is stuck on a cliff" on my phone.

    When I went for my biopsies a couple of weeks ago I felt the same way you did. I was frustrated, I was anxious and wanted not to be there. But I thought of my mom and my aunts and how they didn't win their battle with cancer. I'm so incredibly fortunate that while I keep growing nodules in my body they keep coming back benign and I'm grateful for that.

    Love your blog!
    38 days ago
    It just goes to show we humans clean the floors our wayi emoticon emoticon
    38 days ago
    What a lovely humorous/serious blog. Yes, the loss of control -- whether with BOB or with cancer -- is so difficult to endure! Like you I never did ask "why me" -- but I remember a fellow in the cancer waiting room at the hospital who cornered me aggressively and wanted to know, why him? I asked him to look around the waiting room and ask himself, why any of those people? And pointed out: I was there for exactly the same reason. None of which, I believe, had occurred to him . . . His response to me? ":You're not very nice!!" Maybe not . . . Apparently I had an obligation to "be nice" which did not extend to him!!
    38 days ago
  • ERIN1128
    Your BOBsweep story made me laugh out loud! As for the other, I totally get it. I was the victim of a pretty scary assault at my apartment years ago (1994), and afterward I refused to move out for a long time because I didn't want to give my attacker that much more control over my life, if that makes sense....even though every day I stayed, I was nervous about it happening again. It's hard to accept you don't always have control. Hang in there.
    39 days ago
    Way to go
    39 days ago
    Oh, boy, that "control" thing! I think we all have a bit of it... starts out as babies, grows up with us, and gets caught out, regularly, over the years! When we're flying high, we think we have it... and then... and then...

    Not. So. Much.

    Glad to see you checking in!

    And I loved the Bob stories. My son tried one of these machines and ended up giving it back, as it didn't do things "his way". I forget what brand, but I do remember a couple of phone calls. His would bleep his phone when it got stuck, so if he set it loose in the house while he went to work, or off to the store... phone would tell him either that it finished or that it was stuck. And it "learned" his floor plan. But... it wasn't working for him, so... back to the store it went!
    39 days ago
    A bit of self insight, now what to do with it.
    39 days ago
    emoticon for sharing !
    Take good care !
    All the best !
    39 days ago
    Yes, it is a profound realization in life that we really are not in control. Hard to accept, but it is a truth!

    HUGS and thanks for sharing your perspective.
    39 days ago
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