I never knew a “For Sale” sign could elicit such strong emotions inside of a person. Emotions that involve some smiles and excitement but way more tears, fears and anxiety. We put one of those signs in our yard on a Sunday and by that Friday it was a done deal. I can’t count the number of times I wanted to yank the sign from our yard during those 5 days. Every time I glanced out the window something just didn’t look right. I still sometimes think about yanking it down, although at this point I don’t think it would make a difference.
Before you get the wrong idea, let me promise that I am, indeed, so excited about moving. The house we’re buying is filled with character and quirkiness. It’s a blank canvas for me, which is always a project I love taking on. I’m stoked to make it our own. Parts of it will be a challenge and I think that’s what makes me the most giddy. But in order to say hello to the new house we must first say good-bye to the house we’ve called home for 9 1/2 years, and I’ve never been a big one for good-byes.
For myself, I’m saying good-bye to the house that I bought on my own by working two jobs. The house that I bought because I wanted a project ~ more walls to paint, more rooms to furnish with my bargain finds, more space to do what I love best. The house that I bought because I wanted a yard for my dog and cat, and a garden full of vegetables. The house that scared everyone else away with its foreclosure status. The house that wasn’t anything fancy but felt like a castle to me.
For me & my husband, we’re saying good-bye to the house that witnessed our years of dating. The house that greeted us after we said “I do”. The house we lived in when we brought home 1 new cat and 2 new dogs (not all at the same time if that makes any difference). The house we lived in when we lost our adored black lab of 12 years. The house we lived in when my husband made the decision to climb 365 mountains in 365 days to raise money for cancer research. The house we lived in when we got the news my dad was really sick with cancer. The house we lived in when we found out we were pregnant. The house we lived in when we brought home our now 3 year old son from the hospital. The house we lived in through countless family get-togethers and parties with friends.
For our son, he’s saying good-bye to the only house he’s ever called home, although lucky for him he’s not quite as emotionally bound like the rest of us. Our house is old and we need a new one, according to him.
It’s bittersweet to say the least. I feel like if these walls could talk they’d never stop. They’ve seen a lot of really good times and they’ve seen some really bad times, as most walls have. They’ve seen cream paint, tan paint, grey paint, all shades of blue paint, and my favorite, teal paint. They’ve seen the story of us for the past 9 1/2 years.
Even beyond all the memories though, what this house holds so much of is pure and simple sweat equity, and the sweat just happens to be from some of the people I love best ~ my husband, my mom, my dad and my super talented brother. Without their sweat (literally), this house wouldn’t be the house it is today. All the way from stripping the wallpaper to painting the walls to scrubbing every inch clean to gutting the kitchen to reconfiguring the bathrooms to landscaping the yard to refinishing the hardwoods (which I do NOT recommend you try at home) … all these changes happened because (A) my brother is a master carpenter and because (B) my family lent their hands, their time and their sweat. They helped me turn the scary foreclosure with red carpet into basically the house of my late twenties’ dreams. I can look around at any room in this house and see the before & after in my head. The bridge connecting the before & after is my family. Pretty meaningful if you ask me.
So yeah, it’ll be a tough move. But we’re not going far and I’m beyond thankul for the opportunity. And I’m beyond thankful for the memories I have from this home. I’m looking ahead and looking forward to doing it all over again, making new memories and creating a unique space just for us (maybe just not a complete overhaul this time).
In the words of the great Tom Petty ~ it’s time to move on, time to get going. What lies ahead, I have no way of knowing. But under my feet, baby, grass is growing. It’s time to move on, it’s time to get going.
I couldn’t say it any better. ‘Til next time.