Recently we moved house, leaving our lovely rural home for town life again. It wasn’t a choice we wanted to make, but we’re renters (for now!) and the owners decided to sell the house we were living in. When we first found out six months ago, I broke down. Literally had a meltdown. I couldn’t sleep, didn’t want to get up, my appetite was absent (which for anyone who knows me, will know that is a big deal). Some days I would park the kids up in my bedroom with toys and food, so I could stay in bed all day.
I was still on maternity leave, and had just resigned from 50% of my job, moving to part-time, i.e. I had cut our family incomby a big chunk. We had a four-month old baby. We have a dog. It is near impossible to find a good place to live with a dog. We had just started to get involved in the community, made new friends through Playgroup, got to know the schooling in the area.
You know when you’re mindlessly, happily, heading along a path in life and all of a sudden out of nowhere, you get knocked off? That was how I felt. I felt like I was lost in the woods, trying to find a path, wanting the path I had come off, but knowing it was no longer going to be there.
We went through five months of Open Homes and constantly leaving the house for agents and visitors, to say it was stressful is an understatement. But we did it because each month that passed, we just hoped that maybe it wouldn’t sell, or it would sell to an investor who would keep us on.
Five months. That’s how long it took me to get to the place I am now. At peace with the hand we were being dealt. In fact, ready to make the change on our own terms. When we received notice that the house had sold, it didn’t come as a shock. It came as a relief. No more Open Homes, no more uncertainty. Yes the last of our hope was gone, but at least now we knew. We were moving. We were on that new path.
In New Zealand you receive six weeks notice when a house is sold, so we had six weeks to find a new home. Man is it tough. Especially with a dog. We contacted so many places, but very few were willing to accept a dog. We went to house viewings and there would be 40 other families applying too. All with their own story and desperation. We were not alone. I started to stress again. We have two children to think of, we need a safe, warm, comfortable home for them. We looked at countless options. We argued. And then a friend offered their place. It wasn’t ideal, we would be downsizing significantly, the area is questionable, but it was available. And ours if we wanted it. Simple, a done deal. This was a sign, and we would’ve been crazy to turn it down whilst on such a tight time constraint.
So we took it. We signed the papers, paid the money, and took a few deep breaths. Gained some clarity. And then it came to me. This is not my forever. This is just now. There is nothing stopping us from moving from this place too, when the opportunity we are looking for shows up. I’d been so caught up in the longevity of a home, I didn’t stop to think about what other options might be possible. We still have 1.5 years before we have to actually start schooling. Who knows where we might be by then!
Although I’m not religious, I do believe that “the universe” creates paths and opportunities for learning in our lives. I’ve come to peace with the situation we are now in, by accepting that perhaps this is my chance to relearn some patience, some humility, or even just how to wash dishes by hand (first time without a dishwasher in six years – challenge accepted!). I am putting my trust in this path, but I also know that we will ultimately be able to make a choice down the track. We are not stuck here forever. This is not our settling place. So I choose to be grateful for what we have at the moment and enjoy our “now”. I’m not going to spend anymore time dwelling on the change. This is our now, not our forever.