I’ve been wrestling with mixed emotions this week and trying to figure out how to put them out into the world. Here goes.
We are at the final push in getting the house ready to close. The appliances showed up last week (as did the carpet) and the kitchen counters went in today. I am in LOVE with my kitchen! I am proud of this space and it’s beauty, and excited to fill it with our things and use it to make more pretty (delicious) things. I am also aware of the privilege it is to design and build a home and am beyond grateful.
When I look at this picture it looks almost perfect to me. BUT this is just a material thing and those can be gone faster than they arrived. This picture and any other doesn’t tell the WHOLE story. The truth is, the last few weeks have been filled with all kinds of ups and downs, joy and tears, worry and excitement, and LOTS of macaroni and cheese and screen time. One day I remember thinking “I need caffeine.” and the very next minute thinking “I need a valium.” I was exhausted and amped up at the same time. Who knew that was possible?
I would love to tell you that everyone in my family is as excited about the new house as I am, but I am alone in my happy little boat out at Home Building Sea while everyone else is sending up flares from the Island of “What the heck?!”
My oldest son is having a particularly hard time with this move. He has shed real tears multiple times and even told us to call the builder and tell him to tear the house down. He is adamant that he will not like this move and it is probably going to ruin his life. (Please note, he is not changing schools and is actually moving from a neighborhood with zero kids to one where quite a few of his own friends live.) I’ve been reassured that this is natural and it too shall pass, but I still worry.
In attempt to celebrate our current home that he loves so much, we threw a “Goodbye House” party and invited our close friends. We brought out the slip and slide and I let the boys pick out lemonade and chips for snack! You’d think with all the mac n cheese we’ve been eating lately that wouldn’t be a big deal but it was. We decorated a Mason jar with our address and asked our friends to write down their favorite memories of our home and stuff them in the jar to take with us to our new house.
That all sounded great in theory but even our best intentions can turn into mini disasters. I spent much of the party yelling at the lovely little children in my house to “GO PLAY OUTSIDE” while waddling around my kitchen with a dishtowel under my feet. (So much for my “be-ing” at this party.) I resorted to popsicle bribery just to get them to take a group photo and participate in our “special project,” also known as “BORING!”
The good news is, my son read all the notes almost as soon as everyone left. And it even looks like they might have had fun.
He isn’t the only one struggling with this transition. When we met with our builder last winter one of the first things he said to us was “You need three things to build a house: A banker, a builder, and a marriage counselor.” We knew then that this was our guy.
The last month has been STRESSFUL on my husband and I and we deal with stress very differently. One of us gets crabby and growly and the other of us cleans and cries. I won’t tell you who does what, but I will tell you, honestly, we are temporarily losing it. This weekend we moved most of our stuff into the new house. It was one of the hottest days of the year, our cars had been rummaged through the night before, our kids were getting sick, both of us had busy work schedules in the upcoming week, our old house had some issues that had to be fixed pronto, and by the end of the weekend we couldn’t even have a conversation about grass without someone crying. See. Losing. it. On the up side, despite being in the middle of a move, my house is pretty darn clean. I even managed to get up all those chips and lemonade.
Probably the most sane person in our family right now is our youngest son who loves to go to the new house to catch grasshoppers and collect construction debris. He might be a hoarder.
So there you have it. I still look at the pictures of the new space, see beauty and feel excitement and joy. But please know that our world is just as crazy and messed up as the next person’s. This house in all it’s glory doesn’t change a single thing about us. It’s just a different space for us to live out our madness.
Madness, I tell you.