Listening: More Than Life by Whitley
Weather: 45 degrees. Sunny.
Words: Collect beautiful moments.
I think I’ve always known that this was going to happen. Even when we didn’t REALLY know, we knew.
Does that even make sense?
Middle school. High school. College. First jobs. Real jobs. First house. First kid. Second house.
If I look back just 11 years ago, we were just completing our dream home, our forever-home, on seven acres in a country subdivision back in my hometown of Tonganoxie, Kansas. Our first daughter was just 2 years old, and we were tired and broke and overwhelmed by the process we just survived- building our own home.
Old job. Second kid. New job. New job. New job.
Chickens. Dogs. Goats.
When we realized, several years ago now, that a subdivision wasn’t for us, that neighbors weren’t our jam (sorry neighbors, nothing personal, I promise…) and that we were more interested in homesteads than cul-de-sacs, we started our search.
Turns out, it was hard to find a piece of ground that lived up to the fairy tale we had in our heads. We wanted trees, ponds, creeks, wild grasses, hills, flat expanses, dirt roads, a lovely drive, close to work/school/dance class/family, a long driveway, separation from neighbors, no road noise, a view of the western sky…the list goes on.
We looked for years. YEARS.
And then, our new land kind of found us. It wouldn’t stop speaking to us. It was calling us, nagging us, and finally captured us.
In September, I agreed to put our house on the market. If it sold, we’d put an offer on the land and go from there. Welp – It sold. In three weeks. I was a disaster. I was full of regret and what-if’s, and worst-case scenarios and so very sad to be leaving the house we built for our family. What if we were making a mistake? What if the economy crashes? What if the girls don’t handle the move in a healthy way? What if the seller backs out and decides not to sell? What if we can’t find a place to live while we build? What are we going to do with our animals? How in the world are we going to pack, move, work two full-time jobs, keep the girls going in school and dance and cheer and homework and teeth-brushing and still do all of the THINGS you have to do when you move?
Now, almost three months after my panic-attack, I look back and wonder how the heck we did it all.
Well, I’ll tell you. I cried. A lot. I hired movers. I had a few (ahem) margaritas. About 42 full-on melt-downs. I moved chickens in the dark, the night before we had to leave forever. I tore my rotator cuff. I screamed at my kids and my husband. I sobbed in the shower at night when everyone was asleep.
I was SO scared.
The picture above is the last time all of us were in the house together. My makeup was long-gone. My house was empty, and I was, too. Right after this photo was taken, my youngest was sobbing in the woods while we moved her beloved kitty’s headstone, so we could take “her” with us. It all seems so silly, but we loved our home. We were so, so happy there. Crying in the woods at 10pm over our old cat’s headstone just seemed so devastating and heavy. It was just awful.
It felt like a true low-point in my life. And it continued to feel that way until the move was in the rear-view mirror. Once I said my slobbery, heart-crushing goodbye to my home, I started to feel better. I gained some perspective and pulled myself together. (I do realize how dramatic and silly I sound. It’s just a house, right? There are far, far worse things in the world and I know I really have nothing to complain about. Like I said, perspective did eventually find me.)
This blog is my way of capturing our journey. It’s for our family, but I’m happy to have you along for the ride if you are up for it. We are doing a good portion of the work ourselves on our new home, it will be a true owner-build. We’ve been here before, learned a lot from our mistakes, and are excited to do it again.
Stay tuned for photos of our new property. House plans. Progress pictures, farm progress, goats, chickens, dogs, cats, bunnies, honeybees, and I’m sure more tears because it’s me we’re talking about.
More to come soon.