1. Make pizza sauce. From scratch. From a pile of tomatoes. Because it makes you feel useful. And focused. And normal, in a way that a slightly feral, overly imaginative, often anxious homeschooling mother might not feel when strangers are looking in.

2. Make bread. Why? See above.

3. Try not to listen to the sounds of blow torches and draining pipes and clanging metal and occasional loud voices. Definitely try to not imagine a disaster down there.

4. Tell the dog everything is just fine when she sees a unfamiliar truck parked in the backyard and barks. And barks. And barks. Watch the dog go back to sleep.

5. Drink tea that went cold while doing steps 1-4.

6. Remember you are a writer. Realize that you don’t have to be here, that you have a teenage girl named Blue at a bus stop waiting for you. She’s been waiting for a day or two, and you’re the only one who can get her out of there. She doesn’t care about the hot smell of the newly welded pipes, or the thud of something very heavy falling to the floor. She just wants to get on that bus, the one you have to send her way, so she can find her sister.

7. Write.