Well, we’ve made some progress on decision making after yesterday’s shocking news. Talking with a mortgage officer put some numbers into our heads. There’s good news and bad news. The good news is, after my husband graduates and starts his job, we should be able to qualify for the mortgage range we were hoping for and can start house hunting! The bad news is that we have to vacate this house in about two months and that’s not enough time for him to graduate at the end of this term, take his licensing exam, and start work. We’ll miss the move-out date by two or three months.
Qualifying for a mortgage ahead his job would require a lot of hoops that are discouraging, and would involve a co-signer, higher interest rate, and other disappointing factors. We’d also have to find a house we’d like to make a big commitment to very quickly, from the few homes that are randomly available during this short time frame. So, I highly doubt we will try to push a door open that really isn’t ready yet.
We’re now looking at rental listings. It’s depressing to see how much more money we’ll be spending per month than our current rent. It’s not fun at all to look at the photos and imagine living in yet another place that isn’t ours, is temporary, and where I don’t want to be.
And, my garden! I used portable grow pots and containers, but even so, I can’t move the entire garden to a new location. I have many vegetables and annuals growing in many, many pots. It would be insane to spend a lot of money and physical labor to take them all. And I doubt a homeowner or housing association would be happy with my many, many grow bags. As it is, I don’t want to let go of my potted peach tree, evergreen trees, blueberry bush, grape vines, roses, etc. that are perennials. They are investments in our future.
My trees and flowers will one day flourish at our future new home (assuming they can handle all the moving), and we’ll have a history with these plants; it won’t feel like we don’t have any connection or memories in our new space. So, I’m committed to those and it’s already too much heavy lifting and quite an investment in moving plants- I can’t bring my whole garden! I spent weeks growing the garden and now I won’t get to see it through to harvest. I’ll be having a plant sale to try to recoup some of my losses and fund some of the move. I’ll sell pepper plants, zucchini, eggplant, cucumber, green beans, peas, watermelon and more.
I thought I was helping my family avoid rising food costs and potential shortages, and boosting our nutrition, but it seems I just invested many hours only to invest more hours trying to sell these plants. Sometimes it feels like life beats me down whenever I start to see progress. But the truth is, I did enjoy planting the garden, even though it was work. It gave me a reason to be outside and get exercise. For part of that time, my daughter helped me and we spent good time together. On other occasions my family took my garden “tour” and we ID’d the plants by their seedlings. I did make memories doing this, and I’ve learned how to grow a large garden. I can do it again someday.
But not next season, because we’ll likely be moving again- to our own home! We’ll finally be home again after many years of transitional temporary living. “Temporary” turned out to be a semi-permanent condition. I’m a completely different person from who I was at the start of this. I prefer the new me.
I do wish we’d been able to stay here until next spring, instead of having to move again, but we will get through this. I don’t look forward to the move though, and I dread that first night in the next rental house, when I don’t feel like I’m home. Tossing and turning, smelling unfamiliar smells, possibly having asthma or allergy reactions, jumping at the strange sounds, and feeling disoriented about where things are in the dark- waking up throughout the night, remembering that I’m somewhere new, and wishing I wasn’t.
I will adjust eventually, and then adjust again when we move again. I’ve been through far worse than this. There were times when I wasn’t sure if we’d have any place to go. And there were times when I grieved so bad that I couldn’t imagine ever feeling that life would ever feel good again. Besides my past experiences, world events are incredibly dark and oppressive- my personal struggles are trivial in comparison. This is not a big crisis, and with the right attitude I’ll make the most of it. I will attack each day with positive energy, and even feel excited by the challenge. New adventures are good for us!
But right now, I’m tired from a long day. I’m sad I’m losing my vegetable garden, and other losses (things we can’t bring with us, more money spent on rent, deposit, the cost of moving twice, and more). I’m worried about how this will all come together, and how my family will adjust. Most of all, I just want to be home.
When things like this happen, even if the world is falling apart and others have worse problems, our struggles matter. Even if our past selves had bigger crises, this moment also matters. So I’ll give myself permission to feel disappointed with how things are going. On a happier note, I’m nearly finished with the dress I was making for the Easter show. I bought the basic layer and then built the dress up into an original creation- you’ll see! The show must go on. I’m looking forward to how the troubles of the day are forgotten while painting and singing.