Friday, April 4, 2014

a house update (and 3 things about waiting)



Yesterday we found out that we didn’t get the house.

We had been second in line with an offer on a home that was the best we’ve found since we’ve been here. “Best” in terms of being in a lovely neighborhood and in the right price range and having great bones and the buyers had until yesterday to get their troubled financing in order and they pulled it off at the eleventh hour. Good for them, bad for us.

And even though I knew it was a long shot, I was still bummed. But it wasn’t just the house that I wanted for the practical reasons I mentioned, there was a something more.

What I really wanted is an end to this transition period. An end to living under this umbrella of uncertainty, of not having a clear vision of what’s ahead. Yes, that’s it. It wasn’t the house that was so amazing (it was after all, a fixer) it was wanting to be done with this vague sense of waiting for our new life to begin.

Do you feel like there’s something in your life that you’re waiting for?

Some event or thing that will instantly spill magic all over your life, solve your current problems, plug up some missing hole in your life?

Because this is what I’m learning about waiting for that one special thing.


1.  Real Facts Matter Less

Yes it’s true that there’s a shockingly low inventory of homes on the market here. The realtors even acknowledge it. And while the good news is that we’re finding out the neighborhoods we prefer, the bad news is that the minute a house is listed, there’s a line of people waiting to see it.

One of the first houses I went to check out was in a neighborhood I’d love to live in, but when I sat in the front of the home and called our realtor I found out that there had already been two offers. Both cash, I’m serious. And it had just come on the market that day.

And making it even more interesting was our meeting last week with the owner of the condo we’re leasing. It was such a nice visit. Until we learned that he had decided to have his college sons move into this place on June 1st—“if that works for you-“ instead of the original plan of “take as long as you need (to find a house).”

Are you laughing along with us? Because most mornings we look at each other with loopy smiles and shake our heads. And while usually I can roll with things, I felt an immediate let-down when I found out we were back to square one.

2.  Perspective Matters More

Do know the worst thing about losing out on the house?

It was the morning after.

It was waking up in our little condo and suddenly seeing all the little things that bug me. The dog hair on the felt runner I’d put on the slippery stairs for Stella. The messy clothes on the bed because the dressers are in storage. The boxes still stacked in the spare room.

Nothing had changed. But I realized that my perspective had changed. All of a sudden getting close to having a house that I wanted had flooded me with impatience. A dissatisfaction with our current place.

Although at least I know it’s me. It’s my own head trip.

Down deep I know all this so-called “waiting” is an illusion. There is no in-between time slot that exists in life, no putting life “on hold,” no proverbial train station to sit in while life goes zooming by. We make these time constraints up in our heads. And when we create these false scenarios in which our happiness is tied up to something outside ourselves, we create our own suffering.

The truth is, this is it.

This moment right here is my life. Our new life does not begin with any house, I’m already living it.

“If only I had this, then I’d be happy,” may be a thought that excites us, but it’s also one that causes us to miss out on living the life we have right now. And to overlook the blessings that are right in front of us.

3. What We Choose to Focus on… matters the most

Last Friday evening my cell phone rang and Patrick was on the other end calling me from school. While we were still talking the door bell rang and Mr. M. answered it. And there was Patrick, standing with a big grin on his face because we were totally shocked. He said he thought “we all needed to be together again,” so he drove six and a half hours for a 25 hour visit.

So all four of us got to hang out, talking, laughing, eating, and exploring our new city and returning back ‘home’ to our little, cramped condo.

And by the time we all hugged and kissed goodbye, the worrier (Moi) who feared that we would lose something irreplaceable when we moved out of our treasured family home… learned another lesson.

Home is actually not a location after all.

Did you know this already?

Home is really a feeling.










Literary brooches



Can you relate to any of this?



(happy weekend!)


linking up with at a special place:




Debra@CommonGround said...

Leslie, I totally understand where you're coming from. I told my husband a few weeks ago that working our butts off at the big house would be my idea of Hell, if I didn't see the light at the end of the tunnel. I'm just praying for it to be done. Going thru this is one of the hardest things I've done. I'm praying for your perfect home!

AntiqueChase said...

I felt for you reading this. I know this does not help... but at some point, everybody that looses a bid on a house, eventually says< "I'm glad cause I like this one better".. You will find a house. You will. It just might not be on the timetable you hoped. Not sure why the inventory is so low... coming up on summer is usually great in So Cal. I pinned your quote about unhappiness.. it was a blessing to read that. Hang in there!

Unknown said...

Oh my gosh girlfriend-you have me laughing and shedding a tear. First off, the write your name with your bum is priceless....I love that your son came down for a precious 25 hours so the family could be at 'home' together again. What a sweetie. Leslie dear, I think you are handling all this change with a tremendous spirit. I know it's a huge bummer about the house (aka ability to move on in life)and I'm just like you. Drawing my furniture into a new place the moment it's an option. Right? I do think you will look back on this 'sliver' of time of freedom/anxiety and smile. You are doing it!!! How about a big bunch of blossoms (buy two) to cheer up your condo and forget the dog hair? I love your brain waves and the way you share this personal experience. Your comments on my blog, about my profession, were so touching it made me tear up. You get it...and I so do I. Hugs to you as the hunt continues my friend. xx, Heather

Blondie's Journal said...

"Your new life does not begin with any given moment, you are already living it." I read that and thought you truly summed up where you are at. You are going to experience many more disappointments, and years down the road you will be sitting around the table with your children, their spouses and your grandchildren, recalling all of this. It happens. Time marches on. This will end soon. Hang on to your hat.


Marty@A Stroll Thru Life said...

I can so relate. Thought and prayers for the perfect house soon.

Lori said...

Home is not the building but the people that you are surrounded by ~ sometimes it takes extenuating circumstances for us to realize that. Sending big hugs your way. xo

michele said...

ahhhh yes. of course i can relate. that waiting and that disappointment and the how is this ever gonna wrap up in our favor? wish you could pop over for a visit. better yet, which i was soakin up the sun there and could assist in a small way. prayers are going up. hang in there. something much better lies just up ahead. p.s. what a son you have there!



Leslie said...

Hang in there Leslie. We ALL have similar stories to share.. life's tough and we all have these peaks and valleys. I am taking break from packing to write this. I'm totally overwhelmed .. and although I have a "home" it's dump at the moment and our contractor is dragging his feet on the house plans so the stress is right here in front of me!! Any way, you WILL get through this valley :)and feel free to vent to me at any time.

Apparently this home was not the right one and YOUR new place will be even better. Now is the time to treat yourself to something girlie, a candle, or some fresh flowers. These material things will help bridge the gaps from one experience to another. It's okay to feel a little sad, grumpy, whatever as this too will pass.


Something Nice and Pretty said...

I know your disappointed BUT...your home that is supposed to be yours is out there just waiting for you and your family to walk thur the door, probably sooner than you think.

Have a wonderful Sunday and remember this to shall pass! What a wonderful son you have!


Dayle ~ A Collection of Days said...

Waiting can be such hard work. You have the right idea about it ... finding the good in the midst of it all. If only it were that easy to pull off.

Prayers for the perfect place.

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

I'm sorry about the house, Leslie...I hope it means that something better is coming your way! Your post really spoke to me today...I'm afraid I'm living a little too much in the future, instead of living the NOW. Thank you for reminding me that my life is TODAY.

Unknown said...

That is such a shame, Leslie. But I know you know that in your heart there was a reason you didn't get that particular house and that the right one will come along at the right moment.

You asked if we can relate? I can certainly relate to the uncertainty factor. Four years ago, my husband took a job about 3 hours from where we were living. It meant that I would have to stay in our current home for one year while HIS son graduated higschool and to sell out home. That year of not knowing where I was going to live, when we were moving and having to give up a beloved job was filled with uncertainty and fear.

But it came to an end, we found a house after much searching and I gave up my job to start this new life of which I write on my blog.

Hang in there! This too shall pass.

Donna@anangloinquébec said...

Well, I am sure you knew this would not be easy....nothing good ever is. I love the fact that your son showed up and provided you with a needed and welcomed reminder of "home".
I agree with one your readers, one day this will all be a fond memory of this particular chapter in your adventure.

cindy hattersley design said...

Oh boy can I!!! I will email you rather than put it in print!!

Sherry @ No Minimalist Here said...

Hi Leslie, I can relate to all of this. It was a two year home search for us and I am happy now that we didn't buy earlier. It's funny how in that time our priorities changed.

Sharon @ Elizabeth & Co. said...

I love your positive outlook and I know the right house is out there just waiting for you!

Susan Nowell @ My Place to Yours said...

Leslie, I've been away from Gwen Moss far too long and have spent a few minutes this morning playing catch-up. What a whirlwind you're living! Funny thing is, we're putting our old house on the market any day now -- but we have no idea yet where we'll go. We *think* we'll probably rent while we build a smaller house outside of town on a few acres we own, but nothing's decided for sure. Yesterday my husband said, "Well, we could just buy a small travel trailer and move it to the farm; then we'd be onsite when we build. Then we'd just sell the trailer when we're through with it." Oh, my... A travel trailer? I have a suspicion life around here is about to get even more interesting as we downsize our world to upsize our faith. It's a journey toward living a "dirty hands" kind of faith instead of apathetically surrounding ourselves with too much "stuff". We've done that for far too long. It seems you're having some of the same thoughts we are...

Praying for you as you look for a house. The perfect one is out there somewhere! I look forward to hearing all about it -- and I've just signed up to be sure I don't miss it.

Monica said...

I can completely relate to this. And I think that when you are in your new home it will all make sense and we sort of have to believe (when it comes to homes) that if it didn't work out it was not right for a reason. Wishing you all the best on your hunt - I can only imagine how important your physical space and surrounds are to you. You continue to inspire with your words and images. xx

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